respect or obey. (the law, a decision, a rule)
If you want to stay at this school, you must abide by the rules.
explain, give a reason
I hope you can account for the money you spent!
make sense, seem reasonable
Her story just doesn't add up.
have the same opinion as somebody else.
I agree with you. I think she deserves the award too.
take into consideration,
include in a calculation
You'd better leave early to allow for traffic jams.
Don't answer back your mother!
make a formal request for something
(job, permit, loan etc.)
He applied for the job he saw advertised in the newspaper.
avail (oneself) of
take advantage of something (an opportunity)
When the company is privatized, you should avail yourself of the opportunity and buy some shares.
move backwards, in fear or dislike
When he saw the dog, he backed away.
withdraw, concede defeat
Local authorities backed down on their plans to demolish the building.
1) give support or encouragement
2) make a copy of (file, program, etc.)
1) If I tell the boss we've got too much work, will you back me up?
2) It is recommended to back up all files in a secure location.
base your hopes on someone/something
Don't forget the date. I'm banking on your help.
improve, make more substantial
He beefed up his presentation with diagrams and statistics.
faint, lose consciousness
When he fell off the horse he blacked out.
Separate using a barrier.
The area was blocked off during the demonstration.
2) be destroyed by an explosion
1) The terrorists said the bomb would blow up at 9 o'clock.
2) The car blew up but luckily there was nobody in it.
boil down to
be summarized as
The problem boils down to a lack of money.
start a computer by loading an
operating system or program.
Just give my a few minutes to boot up the computer.
escape from captivity
A few horses broke away from the paddock.
1) go out of order, cease to function
2) lose control of one's emotions
1) John's car broke down so he had to take the bus.
2) The parents broke down when they heard the bad news.
enter by force
Burglars broke into the house around midnight.
Rioting broke out as a result of the strike.
break out of
escape from a place by force
Three prisoners broke out of jail.
come to an end (marriage, relationship)
After her marriage broke up, Emma went to live in London.
raise (a child)
She stopped working in order to bring up her children.
brush up on
improve, refresh one's knowledge of something
Mary had to brush up on her Spanish before going to South America.
meet by accident or unexpectedly
Pedro bumped into his English teacher at the supermarket.
1) stop (something) working
2) become exhausted from over-working
1) The fuse has burnt out.
2) Tom will burn himself out if he doesn't slow down.
butt in (on sthg)
It's rude to butt in on a conversation like that!
return a phone call
I'll call you back as soon as possible.
The meeting was called off because of the strike.
call on/upon sby
formally invite or request
I now call upon the President to address the assembly.
become more relaxed, less angry or upset
He was angry at first but he eventually calmed down.
He carried on gardening in spite of the rain
1) do something as specified
(a plan, an order, a threat)
2) perform or conduct (test, experiment)
1) The plan was carried out to perfection.
2) Tests are carried out to determine the efficiency of a new drug.
postpone until later
As regards holidays, can you carry over any days from one year to the next?
1) pay one's bill and leave (a hotel)
1) Is Mr. Blair still at the hotel? No, he checked out this morning.
2) I don't know if the address is still valid. I'll check it out.
refuse to speak
When the teacher arrived she clammed up.
clamp down on
act strictly to prevent something
The government has decided to clamp down on smoking in public places.
stop operating (company, restaurant, cinema).
When the factory closed down, the employees lost their jobs.
1) find by chance
2) appear, seem, make an impression
1) Julie came across some photographs of her grandparents in the attic.
2) The candidate came across as a dynamic person during the interview.
The police have asked any witnesses to come forward.
come up against
be faced with or opposed by
The project came up against a lot of criticism.
1) stop working
2) stop or fall asleep (from exhaustion)
1) The car conked out on the motorway.
2) He was so exhausted, he conked out in front of the TV.
rely or depend on (for help)
I'm counting on the taxi driver to find the theatre.
remove by drawing a line through
In some exercises, you are asked to cross out the incorrect word.
cut down on
reduce in number or size
The doctor told him to cut down on cigarettes.
1) remove using scissors
2) stop doing something
1) She cut out a picture in a magazine.
2) I'm going to cut out eating between meals.
handle, take care of (problem, situation)
The manager is good at dealing with difficult customers.
calm down, become less strong
When the applause died down, she started to sing.
The shops are closed so we'll have to do without sugar.
last longer than expected
We expected a short speech but it dragged on and on!
write (contract, agreement, document)
An agreement was drawn up and signed by the two parties.
1) wear elegant clothes
2) disguise oneself
1) Do people dress up to go to the opera in your country?
2) Children love to dress up at Halloween.
visit, usually on the way somewhere
I sometimes drop in to see my grandparents on my way home from school.
1) deliver someone or something
2) fall asleep
1) I'll drop you off at the bus stop if you like.
2) Granddad often drops off in front of the TV.
leave school without finishing
She decided to go to art school then dropped out after the first term.
reduce, become less severe or slow down
(pain, traffic, work)
After Christmas the workload generally eases off.
finish in a certain way; result in
Their marriage ended in divorce.
finally reach a state, place or action
If he continues his misconduct he'll end up in prison.
1) eliminate differences of opinion.
2) become level or regular
1) After a long discussion they managed to even out their differences.
2) The road was evened out to make it safer.
fail; doesn't happen
Our planned boat trip fell through because of the storm.
understand, find the answer
I'm trying to figure out how to assemble the bookshelves.
complete (a form/an application)
Please fill out the enclosed form and return it as soon as possible.
discover or obtain information
I'm going to call the cinema to find out what time the film starts.
concentrate on something
The advertising campaign will focus on the quality of the product.
understand; find a solution
We'll have to figure out a way to deliver the goods faster.
get along (with)
be on good terms; work well with
I get along (well) with my mother-in-law.
What exactly are you trying to get at?
The robbers got away in a black car.
manage to cope or to survive
It's difficult to get by on a low salary.
get into (+noun)
How did the burglar get into the house?
1) leave (bus, train, plane)
1) You should get off the bus at Trafalgar Square.
2) She can't get the stain off her sweater.
board (bus, train, plane)
You can pay when you get on the bus.
get on with (something)
continue to do; make progress
Be quiet and get on with your homework.
get on (well) with (somebody)
have a good relationship with
I get on very well with my colleagues.
How did he get out?
get out of (+noun)
How did he get out of the house?
get out of
avoid doing something
Some husbands manage to get out of doing any housework.
recover from (illness, disappointment)
My grandmother had pneumonia but she got over it.
get rid of
It's difficult to get rid of old habits
meet each other
Let's get together for lunch on day
rise, leave bed
I usually get up at 7 o'clock.
stop doing something
Sarah gave up smoking 5 years ago.
Pete went through a lot of pain after the accident.
spend one's childhood; develop; become an adult
He grew up in a small village in the mountains.
submit (report, homework)
All application forms must be handed in before the end of the month.
Samples will be handed out at the end of the demonstration.
spend time in a particular place,
or with a group of friends
Where does he hang out these days?
Who does he hang out with?
end a phone conversation
"Don't hang up. I haven't finished yet."
aim a blow at
He hit at the wasp with the newspaper.
retaliate; reply to an attack
When he was attacked by the others, the boy hit back.
find unexpectedly or by inspiration
She hit upon an idea for her new collection.
- 'Hold on please. I'll put you through to Mr. Brown."
- She held on to the railing as she crossed the bridge.
be quick, act speedily
Hurry up! We'll miss the bus.
resolve by discussion, eliminate differences
The meeting tomorrow will be an opportunity to iron out difficulties.
She was too shy to join in the game.
engage in, become a member of
- meet and unite with
- John was in the Army and Tom joined up as soon as he left school.
- The two groups of tourists joined up at the hotel.
take quick notes
I jotted down the address while watching the programme on TV.
continue doing something
It told him to be quiet but he kept on making noise.
keep up with
stay at the same level as someone or
Bill walks so fast it's difficult to keep up with him.
The football match kicked off at 3 o'clock.
omit, not mention
The child's name was left out of the report.
You promised to come to the party, so don't let me down!
take care of
A babysitter looks after the children when they go out.
think of the future
It's time to forget the past and look ahead
look down on
consider as inferior
He tends to look down on anyone who is not successful
be a spectator at an event
Billy didn't take part in the fight. He just looked on.
try to find something
Jane went to the shops to look for a pair of shoes.
look forward to
await or anticipate with pleasure
I look forward to seeing you soon
look up to
He was a wonderful teacher and many students looked up to him.
make fun of
laugh at/ make jokes about
The old lady dresses so strangely that the kids make fun of her.
invent (excuse, story)
Some employees make up excuses when they arrive late for work.
mistake one thing or person for another
I don't know my neighbours` names yet. I keep mixing them up.
arrive in a new home or office
You've bought a new house? When are you moving in?.
leave your home/office for another one
My neighbour is leaving. He's moving out next Saturday.
My grandfather often nods off in front of the television.
I'll call the station and note down the departure times
leave a system or decide not to participate
I enjoy tennis but I'm so busy I had to opt out of the tournament.
admit or confess something
The boy owned up. He said he kicked the ball through the window.
The old lady passed away peacefully.
She passed out when she heard the bad news.
I'll lend you 20€ provided you pay me back before the end of the week.
postpone, arrange a later date
The meeting was put off because of the strike
turn on, switch on
Could you put on the light please?
It took a long time to put out the fire
accommodate, give somebody a bed
We can put you up if you'd like to come for a week-end.
I'll pick you up at the station when you arrive.
indicate/direct attention to something
She pointed out the mistake.
count on, depend on, trust
Don't worry. You can rely on me. I can keep a secret.
The police ruled out political motives
escape from a place or suddenly leave
He ran away from home at the age of fourteen.
meet by accident or unexpectedly (also: bump into)
Sophie ran into Maria at the shopping centre.
run out of
have no more of something
What a nuisance! We've run out of coffee.
start a journey;
Early Saturday morning we set off for the ski slopes .
start a business
She set up her own company 10 years ago.
It's always wise to shop around before buying anything.
brag or want to be admired
There's David showing off in his new sports car!
We expected David to come but he didn't show up.
(impolite) be silent, stop talking
Oh shut up, you idiot!
take a seat
Please come in and sit down
rise from a sitting position
The pupils stood up when the headmaster arrived.
stick up for
It's important to stick up for one's principles.
resemble, in appearance or character
Jamie really takes after his dad.
take care of
I'll take care of your plants while you're away
leave the ground
The plane took off at 6 a.m.
hire or engage staff
Business is good so the company is taking on extra staff.
She took out a pen to note the address
The teacher told her off for not doing her homework
I'll have to think over the proposal before I decide.
wear something to see if it suits or fits
I'm not sure about the size. Can I try it on?
I couldn't turn down an offer like that!
finish a product (so that there's none left)
The kids have used up all the toothpaste.
express confidence in, or guarantee something
You can give the keys to Andy. I can vouch for him.
Watch out! There's a car coming
1) become unusable
2) become very tired
1) Julie wore out her shoes visiting the city.
2) At the end of the day Julie was worn out.
1) do physical exercise
2) find a solution or calculate something
1) I work out twice a week at the gym club.
2) It's expensive but I haven't worked out the exact cost yet.
clean (board, table).
The teacher asked Lee to wipe off the board.