Abide by – to show respect towards.
All the students must abide by the rules.
Account for – to give reasons, to explain.
Ex: You should account for your absence.
Add up – to be reasonable, to make sense.
Ex: Paul’s story doesn’t add up.
Agree with: to share opinion with someone.
Ex: I agree with you regarding that matter.
Allow for: to consider something.
Ex: We should allow for bigger money spendings during the holiday.
Appeal to: 1) to plead or make a request.
Ex: He appealed to the court to change their decision.
2) to be attractive or interesting.
Ex: Horror movies do not appeal to me.
Apply for: to make a formal request.
Ex: Many people applied for that position.
Back away (off): to move backwards from someone or something.
Ex: The horse backed away from the snake.
Back down: to withdraw, to retreat.
Ex: I believe it’s better to back down from this situation.
Back up: to give support or encouragement.
Ex: Will you please back me up on this at the meeting?
Bank on: to rely on someone or something.
Ex: I wouldn’t bank on that train arriving on time if I were you.
Black out: to faint, to lose consciousness.
Ex: Mary nearly blacked out when she heard the news.
Blow up: to explode.
Ex: They blew up the construction and built it up again.
Boot up: to start a computer by loading an operating system or program.
Ex: You have to boot up your computer before you start to work.
Break down: to stop working, to go out of order.
Ex: The washing machine broke down so we had to call the service.
Break into: to enter by force.
Ex: Burglars broke into our neighbour‘s apartment last night.
Break out: to begin suddenly.
Ex: The Second World War broke out in 1939.
Break up: to end a relationship.
Ex: They broke up because he started seeing another girl.
Bring up: to raise a child.
Ex: She brought her children up during the war.
Bump into: to meet someone unexpectedly.
Ex: I bumped into Sarah this morning.
Burn out: to run out of fuel and go out.
Ex: The light bulb in the garage burnt out. Could you please change it?
Call back: to return a phone call.
Ex: I’m busy at the moment. Could you please call back later?
Call for – make necessary, recommended.
Ex: This recipe is calling for thyme.
Call off: to cancel.
Ex: I’m afraid I’ll have to call off our meeting on Saturday.
Call on – to invite someone in a formal way to do something.
Ex: I call on all of you to raise your glasses.
Calm down: to relax; to become less active.
Ex: You shouldn’t worry. Calm down!
Carry on: to continue.
Ex: Please carry on with your reading.
Carry out: 1) to do something as specified (a plan, an oder)
Ex: His orders were carried out to the letter.
2) to perform or conduct (test, experiment).
Ex: That company doesn’t carry our experiments on animals.
Check in: to register at a hotel or airport.
Ex: We checked in at the airport before our flight.
Check out: to pay a bill and leave a place (hotel)
Ex: I checked out of the hotel at noon.
Clam up: to say nothing, to refuse to speak.
Ex: When they asked him about the burglary, he clammed up.
Come across: 1) to meet or find by chance.
Ex: I came across some old photos while I was tidying up the room.
2) to appear, seem, make an impression.
Ex: He seemed like a gentle man, but sometimes he came across as an unpleasant one.
Come down with: to begin being ill from an illness.
Ex: I don’t think I’ll be able to come to work today. I’ve come down with the flu.
Come forward: to present oneself, to come forward.
Ex: Colin came forward and stood before the class.
Come up with: to produce or discover something, to improvise.
Ex: It is believed that the scientists came up with the cure for cancer.
Count on: to rely or depend on someone or something.
Ex: You can count on him to fix your car.
Cut down on: to reduce the amount of something.
Ex: I gained weight. I’ll have to cut down on cakes.
Cut out: 1) to remove something using scissors.
Ex: I cut out the coupon from the newspapers.
2) to stop doing something.
Ex: You need to cut out sugar from your diet.
Deal with: to handle something (a problem).
Ex: I can’t deal with all these problems at the same time.
Hand around – to give something to each person in a group.
Ex: She poured the soup into plates and handed them around to us.
Hand back – to give back something you’re holding back to someone.
Ex: Paul handed her back the book after he looked at it.
Hand down – to give something to someone (usually to a member of the family) so they can have it after you die.
Ex: She was handed down that necklace by her grandmother.
Hand in – to give documents or written papers to officials or teacher so they can deal with it.
Ex: I handed my passport in to the custom officer.
Keep at – if you keep at something, then you’re persisting on doing something although it may be difficult.
Ex: I know it is difficult, but you have to keep at it.
Keep away – if you keep away from people, then you don’t come close to them. If you keep away from things, then you don’t touch them, or use them.
Ex: Jane had a bad cold yesterday and everyone kept away from her. I’m trying to keep away from the fridge as I want to lose weight.
1.You keep something like your voice, noise, music, etc. down. If music is too loud and you want it to be quieter, you can say:
Please, keep that music down!
2. You keep something down when you’re trying to keep it on a lower lever.
Our company is trying to keep the prices down .
1.If you keep from something, then you’re trying to refrain from doing it, although it is hard.
Ex: I really wanted to punch that guy, but I kept from it.
2.If you keep people from doing something, then you’re trying to stop them doing it.
Ex: We should keep from laughing that much.
1.You keep off something if you’re trying not to step on it.
Ex: Please, keep off the grass.
2.If you keep off addictive substances like alcohol or cigarettes, it means that you don’t use them.
Ex: He is a nice guy for as long as he keeps off alcohol.
Keep on – if you keep on doing something, then you continue doing it.
Ex: Paul told Stuart to stop laughing, but he just kept on with it.
1.If you keep an information to yourself, then you keep it to yourself.
Ex: It is a secret, keep it to yourself.
2. If you avoid to leave a place or activity.
Ex: It was raining outside, so I kept to my room.
1.If you keep up doing something, then you continue doing it.
Ex: The coach told them to keep up running.
2. To advance at the same rate as someone.
Ex: Mary missed many lessons due to illness so she found it difficult to keep up with other children.