Take the three examples given below to start with:

    1. He put the lamp on the table.
    2. He is just out now.
    3. He put out (extinguished) the lamp.

In the first and second sentences, you get the usual meanings of put and out. These two words have been grouped together in the third sentence and put out acquires a sense which has little connection with either put or out. Verbs followed by some prepositions or adverbs sometimes develop an idiomatic sense. Such groups are called Group Verbs or Verb Idioms or Phrasal Verb.

The construction looks like Verb+Preposition Or, Verb+Adverb

Here we go through a few Group Verbs:


Act on/upon (worked upon) – The company has decided to act on/upon the new project and allocate resources towards it.
Act on/upon (carried out) – The emergency services acted upon the call for help and arrived at the scene promptly.
Act up to (as expected) – The team has been performing well and acting up to their potential, leading to positive results.


Bear away (or off) (win) – The local team bore away the championship after a hard-fought final match.
Bear down (overthrow) – The popular uprising bore down the corrupt government and brought about change.
Bear on (or upon) (be relevant to) – The findings of the study bear on/upon the effectiveness of the current healthcare system.
Bear out (prove) – The research bears out the theory that regular exercise can improve mental health.
Bears up (supports) – The strong foundation of the building bears up the weight of the structure.
Bear with (tolerate) – Please bear with me while I finish this presentation.


Blow in (call to see) – She blew in unannounced and caught her friends by surprise.
Blow out (put out) – She blew out the candles on her birthday cake.
Blow over (pass by) – The storm eventually blew over and the sun came out.
Blew up (destroyed by explosives) – The old bridge was blown up to make way for a new one.
Blow upon (betray) – She blew upon the trust of her friends by revealing their secrets.


Break away from (give up) – He decided to break away from his old habits and start a healthier lifestyle.
Break down (become ill) – He broke down with the flu and was unable to attend work for a few days. She broke down emotionally after receiving the bad news.
Break in (enter by force) – The burglars broke in through the back window of the house. The police had to break in when they received reports of a disturbance inside the building.
Break in (train) – The horse was broken in by a professional trainer.
Break in on (interrupt) – He broke in on their conversation to ask for directions.
Break into (force an entry) – The robbers broke into the bank and stole a large amount of money.
Break off (stop suddenly) – She broke off the relationship when she discovered he was cheating on her. The negotiation broke off when the two parties could not reach an agreement.
Break out (begin suddenly) – A war broke out between the two countries, causing widespread devastation.
Break through (get through by force) – The army broke through the enemy lines and captured the city. The researchers finally broke through the barriers and made a significant discovery.
Break up (dispersed) – The crowd broke up after the concert ended.
Brake with (quarrel with) – He broke with his best friend over a disagreement about politics. She broke with her family after they disapproved of her marriage.


Bring about (cause) – His leadership brought about many positive changes in the company.
Bring along (educate) – She brought along her children to the museum to educate them about art. He brought along his friend to the party to introduce him to everyone.
Bring back (cause to remember) – The song brings back memories of my childhood.
Bring down (cause to fall) – The storm brought down many trees and caused widespread damage. The stock market was brought down by the economic crisis.
Bring down (excited great applause) – The comedian brought down the house with his jokes. The singer brought down the audience with her powerful performance.
Bring in (yields) – The investment brought in a good return. The company’s new product line brought in a lot of revenue.
Bring forth (causes, produces) – The trial brought forth new evidence that changed the outcome of the case. Her research brought forth new ideas and theories in the field.
Bring off (rescue) – The fire department was able to bring off all the trapped individuals from the building.
Bring on (cause to happen) – The poor hygiene practices brought on a widespread outbreak of the disease. His lack of sleep brought on a headache.
Bring out (publish) – The author brought out his latest book last week.
Bring round (caused to recover) – The paramedics were able to bring him round after he fainted.
Bring under (make obedient) – The trainer was able to bring the wild horse under control.
Bring up (rear) – She is being brought up in a loving and nurturing family.


Burst forth (issued suddenly) – The sun burst forth from behind the clouds, illuminating the sky. The flowers burst forth in a vibrant display of colour after the rain.
Burst in (get in by force) – The robbers burst into the bank and demanded money from the tellers.
Burst into (laughter) – He told a funny joke and everyone burst into laughter.
Burst with (laughing) – The comedy show had everyone in the audience bursting with laughter.
Burst into tears – The reunion with her long-lost friend made her burst into tears.
Burst out crying – The movie was so touching that many in the audience burst out crying.
Burst upon (came suddenly) – The storm burst upon the town, causing widespread damage. The news of the celebrity’s death burst upon the public, causing shock and sadness.


Call at (visit) – I call at my grandparents’ house every Sunday.
Call for (deserve) – The rising crime rate was calling for stricter laws.
Call forth (make to come) – The teacher called forth the student to answer the question. The judge was calling forth witnesses one by one to the stand.
Call in (ask to come) – The manager called in the employees for a meeting. The headmaster was calling in the parents for a conference.
Call off (stop) – The umpire calls off the game due to the rain. The police were calling off the search because of the lack of progress.
Call on (pay a short visit) – I called on my sister after work yesterday. I call on my neighbours once a week to check on them.
Call out (summon) – The teacher called out the student for cheating. The doctor was calling out for a nurse during the operation.
Call over (the names in class) – The teacher calls over the names in class to take attendance. 
Call up (recollect) – I call up old memories when I smell my mother’s cooking. I called up the conversation I had with my friend last night.
Call upon (order) – The judge calls upon the jury to deliver the verdict.


Carry about (keep with) – She always carries about a photo of her parents in her wallet.
Carry way (powerfully influenced) – His impassioned speech carried away the audience.
Carry off (kill) – The disease carried off many people in the town.
Carry on (conduct) – She is an excellent manager and knows how to carry on the business efficiently.
Carry out (obey) – The workers carried out the instructions given by their supervisor.
Carry through (bring to a successful end) – He worked hard to carry through his plan and finally succeeded.


Come about (happen) – The accident came about due to the driver’s negligence.
Come across (find/meet suddenly) – I came across an old friend while shopping in the city.
Come along (make haste) – Come along, we don’t have much time.
Come by (get back) – She finally came by the book she had lent to her friend.
Come down (become cheaper) – The price of the product came down after the sale started.


Give away (give in marriage) – The bride’s father gave her away in the wedding ceremony.
Give away (distribute Prize) – The company gave away free smartphones as a prize for their contest.
Give in (hand over) – She had to give in her keys to the security guard when she left the office.
Give in (surrender/yield) – After a long battle, the army had to give in to the enemy.
Give out (be exhausted) – The battery on her phone gave out, and she couldn’t make any calls.
Give out (distribute handouts) – The teacher gave out handouts to the students before the class started.
Give out (announce) – The host gave out the results of the quiz contest.
Give over (stop) – She gave over smoking after her doctor advised her to quit.
Give over (abandon as incurable) – The doctor had to give over the patient as they couldn’t find a cure for the disease.
Give over to (set aside for) – He gave over his Sundays to volunteer work at the local hospital.
Give up (stop a bad habit ) – He decided to give up his habit of biting his nails.
Give up (stop trying to cure) – The doctors had to give up trying to save the patient as they couldn’t revive them.
Give up (resign) – She gave up her job as a teacher to start her own business.
Give up (surrender) – The thief had to give up and surrender to the police after being surrounded.


Go at (selling at a price of) – The store is going at the winter coats for 50% off.
Go back to (belongs to) – That painting on the wall used to go back to my grandparents.
Go back on (break a promise) – He went back on his word to repay the loan.
Go by (pass) – The parade will go by in front of our house.
Go by (judge by) – We can’t go by appearance alone when making a hiring decision.
Go down (price fall) – The stock market went down yesterday.
Go down (be remembered) – Her name will go down in history as a pioneering scientist.
Go in for (sitting for) – He went in for an interview for the management position.
Go in for (have as a hobby) – She goes in for collecting antique furniture.
Go into (examine carefully) – The police went into the matter thoroughly before making an arrest.
Go off (discharge) – The fire alarm went off in the middle of the night.
Go on (continue) – The show must go on, even if one actor is sick.
Go on for (approach) – Winter is going on for, so it’s getting colder and colder.
Go out (stop burning lamp) – The lights went out during the storm.
Go out (go out of fashion) – Crochet sweaters went out of fashion years ago.
Go over (change position or place) – The wind moved the kite over to the other side of the field.
Go through (examine) – The inspectors went through the building to check for any safety hazards.
Go through (is being sold) – The old store is going through an auction this weekend.
Go through with (complete) – She decided to go through with the surgery, despite her fear.
Go up (increased in price) – Gas prices going up day by day.
Go well with (match) – The red wine goes well with the steak dinner.


Hang about (waited idly about) – She hung about outside the store for an hour, waiting for her friend to finish shopping.
Hang back (hesitate) – He hung back, not sure if he wanted to join the group for the hike.
Hang on (hold or wait) – Can you hang on a minute while I finish this phone call?
Hang on (listen attentively) – I hung on to every word of the lecture, trying to absorb as much information as possible.
Hang over (threaten) – The dark clouds hanging over the city signalled an imminent storm.
Hang up (delay) – The construction project was hung up by a shortage of materials.


Hold by (stick to) – I always hold by my promises and never break them.
Hold forth (offer) – He held forth a helping hand to the elderly woman struggling with her groceries.
Hold forth on (make a speech on) – The guest speaker held forth on the benefits of renewable energy for over an hour.
Hold in (restrain) – She had to hold in her laughter during the solemn ceremony.
Hold on (persist) – Despite the challenges, he held on to his dreams and eventually achieved them.
Hold out (offer) – She held out her hand to shake mine.
Hold out (offer resistance) – The defenders held out against the enemy for as long as they could.
Hold over (postpone) – The meeting has been held over until next week.
Hold up (delay) – The heavy traffic held up the progress of the journey.
Hold up (to stop with the intent to rob) – The bank was held up by two armed robbers.
Hold with (approve of) – I don’t hold with that kind of behaviour.


Keep at (stick to) – She promised to keep at her diet and exercise routine until she reaches her goal weight.
Keep back (conceal) – She tried to keep back her tears, but they kept flowing.
Keep keep down (control) – She struggled to keep down her breakfast after the shocking news.
Keep of (or keep away from) – She was advised to keep off junk food to maintain her health.
Keep on (continue) – Despite the obstacles, she decided to keep on with her plans.
Keep on about (keep on talking about) – Her friends were getting annoyed with her because she kept on about her ex-boyfriend.
Keep to (adhere to) – She promised to keep to her schedule and not deviate from it.
Keep to (maintain lane on road) – He was warned to keep to his lane while driving on the highway.
Keep up (maintained) – She is determined to keep up her good grades this semester.
Keep up with (go forward) – He found it difficult to keep up with the fast-paced training program.
Keep up with (understand) – She was having trouble keeping up with the conversation due to the technical terms used.


Lay about or into (strike or attack) – During the fight, he laid into his opponent with punches and kicks.
Lay aside (give up) – She laid aside her fears and decided to take the leap of faith.
Lay aside (or lay by, in) (save) – They laid aside some money each month for their future plans.
Lay down (sacrificed) – He had to lay down his life for his country.
Lay down (surrendered) – The enemy forces laid down their arms and surrendered.
Lay down (set down on paper) – He decided to lay down his thoughts on paper.
Lay off (discharge for lack of work) – Due to the recession, the company had to lay off several employees.
Lay out (arranged) – The planner laid out the schedule for the entire month.
Laid up (confined to bed) – She was laid up with a severe cold and had to take rest for a few days.


Let by (allow one to pass by) – The security guard let the VIP by without checking his ID.
Let down (fail to help) – She promised to help me with the project, but she let me down in the end.
Let in (be cheated) – He was so trusting that he let himself be in by the fraudster.
Let into (made acquainted with) – The boss let the new employees into the company’s culture and values.
Let off (pardon) – The judge let off the defendant with a warning instead of a prison sentence.
Let out (make known) – The company let out the news about the upcoming product launch to the public.
Let out (rent, release) – I let out my spare room to a young couple who were looking for a place to live. The dog was let out of its cage so it could run around in the park.


Look after (takes care of) – I have to look after my sick grandma this weekend.
Look down upon (despise) – He always looks down upon people who don’t have the same opinions as him.
Look for (expect) – I am looking for a new job that will offer better benefits.
Look forward to (expect with pleasure) – I am really looking forward to my vacation next month.
Look in (pay a short visit) – Can you look in on the kids while I’m out running errands?
Look into (investigating) – The police are looking into the cause of the accident.
Look on (consider) – I look on this project as a challenging but exciting opportunity.
Look out (be careful) – Look out for that car! It’s coming your way.
Look out for (search) – I’m looking out for a new pair of shoes for the summer.
Look over (examine) – Can you look over this report before I send it to the boss?
Look to (attend to) – I’ll have to look to my responsibilities at work now.
Look to (take care) – We need to look to our health and well-being if we want to live a long life.
Look to (expect) – I’m looking to the future with optimism and hope.
Look up (search for) – I need to look up the meaning of this word in the dictionary.
Look up (call on) – I’ll look you up next time I’m in town.
Look up (improve) – I hope my grades will look up after this semester.
Look up to (admire) – I look up to my mother as a role model.
Look upon (regard) – He looked upon the experience as a valuable lesson.


Make after (chase) – The police made after the thief who had stolen the purse.
Make away with (commit suicide) – The man was in so much debt that he made away with himself.
Make for (contribute to) – The new laws make for a better society.
Make of (understand) – What do you make of the new situation?
Make off (run away) – The thief made off with the money as soon as he saw the police.
Make out (understand) – I couldn’t make out what the speaker was saying because of the background noise.
Make out (prepare) – I need to make out a shopping list for the grocery store.
Make over (transfer by deed) – The woman made over her house to her children.
Make up (invent excuses) – The man made up a story about why he was late for work.
Make up (compose) – The band made up a new song for their next album.
Make up for (compensate for) – I’ll make up for being late by buying you dinner.


Pass away (die) – Unfortunately, my grandfather passed away last night.
Pass by (be overlooked) – The mistake in the report was passed by unnoticed.
Pass for (is thought to be) – The man passed for an expert in the field, but later it was revealed that he was a fraud.
Pass off (represent wisely) – She was able to pass off the fake painting as an original.
Pass off (go through to the end) – The concert passed off without any hitches.
Pass on (transmit) – The knowledge was passed on from generation to generation.
Pass over (overlooked) – The opportunity was passed over because of lack of interest. n.
Pass through (pass through something) – The town was just a stopover as the train passed through.


Pull down (become weaker) – The economy has been struggling for years and it seems like it’s slowly starting to pull down.
Pull round (recover) – After a long battle with illness, the patient finally started to pull round and recover.
Pull through (save from ruin) – The company was on the brink of bankruptcy, but with the help of a new investor, they were able to pull through.
Pull up (rebuke) – The teacher pulled the student up for not paying attention in class and not following the rules.


Put about (worry) – He put about the idea that the company was going bankrupt.
Put back (check) – She put back her hair as she walked into the room.
Put by (ignored) – The problem was put by until the next meeting.
Put down (suppress) – The government is putting down any attempt at a revolt.
Put down (write) – He put down his thoughts in a journal.
Put in a word (speak on one’s behalf) – Can you put in a word for me to your manager?
Put in (make a claim) – She put in a claim for damages.
Put in for (apply for) – He put in for a transfer to another department.
Put off (take off) – She put off her coat when she entered the room.
Put off (postponed) – The meeting was put off until next week.
Put on (pretended to have) – She put on a brave face even though she was scared.
Put out (extinguish) – The fire was put out with a fire extinguisher.
Put out (annoyed) – She was put out by the delay.
Put up (stay) – They put up at a hotel while they were on holiday.
Put up (nominate as a candidate) – She was put up as a candidate for the election.
Put up with (tolerate) – He can’t put up with the noise any longer.


Run after (pursue) – She has been running after her dream of becoming a doctor for as long as she can remember.
Run away with (use up) – I’m afraid we have run away with all the budget for the project and now we’re out of funds.
Run down (stop going clock) – His grandfather’s clock has been running down for a while now and needs to be wound.
Run down (tired) – After a long day at work, I feel completely run down and need some rest.
Run down (knocked down) – A driver ran down a pedestrian while he was crossing the street.
Run down (speaks against) – The candidate’s political rival tried to run him down in the debate by highlighting his past mistakes.
Run in (arrest) – The police ran in the thief who had been hiding in the nearby woods.
Run into (incur debt) – With all the unexpected expenses, I’ve run into a large debt that I need to pay off.
Run into (book edition) – I was lucky enough to run into a first edition of the book that I’ve been looking for.
Run out (become exhausted) – The marathon runner ran out of energy near the finish line.
Run over (read through quickly) – I need to run over the notes for the presentation one more time.
Run through (used up) – They ran through the entire stock of the product in just a week.
Run up (hoisted flag) – The flag was run up the flagpole to signal the start of the ceremony.
Run up (elect hastily) – The town council decided to run up a new mayor after the previous one resigned.


See into (investigate) – The detective was assigned to see into the matter of the missing funds.
See off (saw my departure) – All my friends came to the airport to see me off.
See over (inspect) – The manager saw over the production line to ensure everything was running smoothly.
See through (find out) – Despite the accused’s denials, the police were able to see through his lies and arrest him.
See to it (take car of it) – The event coordinator promised to see to it that all arrangements for the conference were taken care of.


Set about (started) – I set about painting the room as soon as I got home.
Set aside (rejected) – The proposal was set aside because it didn’t meet the necessary requirements.
Set down (a record) – She set down the details of the meeting in her notebook.
Set forth (state clearly) – The author sets forth his argument in a clear and concise manner.
Set in (begin) – Winter has set in and the temperature has dropped significantly.
Set off (or out or forth) (started) – We set off early in the morning for our road trip.
Set on (attacked) – The dog was set on the intruder and chased them out of the house.
Set out (state) – The government has set out a plan to address the issue of homelessness.
Set out (display) – The shop owner set out her wares on the table for customers to see.
Set to (begin in earnest) – She set to work on the project with great determination.
Set up (established) – The company was set up by a group of young entrepreneurs.
Set up (start a business) – He set up a small bakery in the countryside.
Set up (raise voice) – She set up her voice and sang the national anthem.


Stand by (help) – If you need anything, just call me. I’ll always stand by you.
Stand down (withdraw from contest) – The competitor decided to stand down after realizing that he was not prepared for the race.
Stand for (supports) – The letter ‘U’ stands for unity in the United Nations logo.
Stand for (tolerate) – I won’t stand for any kind of discrimination or prejudice.
Stand in (take a share) – When the manager was absent, I had to stand in for him and handle the team’s work.
Stand to (stick to) – I stand to my principles and beliefs, no matter what anyone says.
Stand up for (defend) – She always stands up for the rights of the marginalized communities.
Stand up to (resist) – It takes courage to stand up to authority and demand your rights.


Take after (resemble) – He takes after his father in looks and his mother in intelligence.
Take down (write down) – Please take down the instructions so that you don’t forget them.
Take one for (mistake one as) – I took her for my best friend, but she betrayed me.
Take in (understand) – I’m trying to take in all the information and make sense of it.
Take in (cheat) – He was arrested for taking in customers by selling fake goods.
Take off (start) – The aeroplane finally took off after a delay of several hours.
Take on (become popular) – This new song has taken on and is now playing on the radio constantly.
Take over (take charge) – The new CEO has taken over the company and is making changes to improve its performance.”
Take to (form a liking for) – She took to playing the guitar after her first lesson.
Take to (form a habit of) – He has taken to drinking coffee every morning.
Take up (adopt as a profession) – She took up photography as a hobby and now she’s a professional photographer.
Take up (raise a matter) – The politician took up the issue of pollution in the city in his speech.


Tell of (rebuke, scold) – His mother told him off for coming home late without a phone call.
Tell on (affect) – The cold weather is telling on my health, I need to wear more warm clothes.


Turn down (reject) – I was hoping to get the promotion, but my boss turned down my request.
Turn in (go to bed) – It’s getting late, I think I’ll turn in for the night.
Turn on (allow to operate) – She turned on the TV to watch the news.
Turn on (attack) – He was caught off guard when his colleague suddenly turned on him in a fit of anger.
Turn off or out (stop operating) – She turned off the lights before leaving the room.
Turn out (assemble) – Everyone was asked to turn out for the meeting to discuss the budget.
Turn out (proved to be) – It turned out that the rumours were untrue.
Turn out (produce) – The company is planning to turn out 100,000 units this quarter.
Turn to (got to work) – When the deadline was approaching, the team had no choice but to turn to and work around the clock.
Turn up (arrive) – He was late for the party, but finally turned up at 10 PM.


Work in (causes a change) – The new policy is expected to work in some major changes to the company’s operations.
Work in (fit in) – She has to work in her extra hours at the office into her busy schedule.
Work off (dispose of) – He has been working off his stress by going for daily runs.
Work out (the sum) – Can you work out the sum of these two numbers for me?
Work out well (plan) – I’m glad to hear that the plan worked out well.
Work out (excite) – The music and lights worked out the crowd and got them dancing.


Write one down (declare one to be) – The committee wrote her down as the official winner of the election.
Write off (cancel) – The company had to write off several projects due to budget constraints.
Write writes oneself out (exhausts one’s ideas) – He was afraid that he would write himself out after writing several novels in a row.
Write up (bring to date) – She was tasked to write up the company’s annual report.
Write up (praised in writing) – His performance was so impressive that his manager wrote him up in his annual review.

Phrasal Verbs asked in WBCS