Home > Phrasal Verb Dictionary: Letter C

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Very common & useful phrasal verb Call back [Call back, call somebody back].- When you call back or call somebody back, you return a phone call or call again later. Phone back, ring back

  • I'll call you back as soon as I hear anything.
  • Can you ask her to call me back, please?

Call in.- (insep) visit When you call in, you pay somebody a short visit. Drop in, pop in

  • Call in next time you're in town.
  • I've just called in to see if you needed anything. 

Call in [Call somebody in].- (doctor, expert, consultant, police, technician) When you call somebody in, you ask somebody, like a doctor or a technician, to come and help you with a problem.

  • We had to call in a doctor.
  • The situation got out of hand and the Army had to be called in.
  • We can't afford to call in a technician every time the washing-machine breaks down.

Call off [Call something off].- cancel When you call something off, you cancel an event. Be off, put off

  • The concert was called off because of rain.
  • It's too late to call off the ceremony now.

Call out [Call something out].- shout When you call something out, you announce or say something in a loud voice.

  • He called out the results.
  • She called out his name but there was no answer.

Call up [Call somebody up].- phone When you call somebody up, you telephone somebody.

  • Call me up when you get there.
  • He called me up this this morning.

Calm down [Calm down, calm somebody down].- When you calm down, you become more relaxed.

  • He was very upset about it, but he calmed down eventually.
  • She was rude and aggressive towards him but it was clear he was trying to calm her down.

Carry away [Get carried away].- When you get carried away, you behave in a silly way because you are too excited, angry, etc; not know what you are doing.

  • Sorry I called you a fool; I got a bit carried away. 
  • She got carried away in the shop and spent all her money on new dresses.

Carry on.- (insep) Continue When you carry on, or carry on doing something, you continue doing something. Go on, keep on

  • Carry on working!
  • He carried on as if nothing had happened.
  • If things carry on the way they are, you'll lose your job.

Carry out [Carry something out].- Do (survey, investigation, research, review, plan, threat) When you carry something out, you do a task.

  • It's going to be difficult to carry out that plan.
  • The government is going to carry out a survey on the nation's health.
  • Politicians don't usually carry out their promises.

Carve out [Carve something out].- Get (career, name, reputation, place, role) When you carve something out, you manage to get it by working hard.

Catch on.- (insep) (idea, fashion, concept) When something catches on, it becomes popular.

  • The idea eventually caught on and became all the rage by the 1980s.

Chase away [Chase somebody away, chase something off].- When you chase somebody or an animal away, you force a person or animal to leave a place with threats or by attacking them.

  • A passer-by stopped his car to help and, along with several neighbors, managed to chase the dog away. No one was bitten.

chase off.- The same as chase away.

Chat up [Chat somebody up].- When you chat somebody up, you talk to them in a friendly way because you are sexually attracted to them.

  • Normally I find it dead hard to chat up a girl but I was drunk and had no inhibitions.

Very common & useful phrasal verb Check in [Check in, check something in].- When you check in, you arrive at a hotel or airport and report your arrival at reception or check-in desk.

  • We checked into the hotel a little after midnight.
  • I arrived in London a few days ago and checked into the Bolsover Hotel.
  • When I checked in with a confirmed economy ticket, I was told that the flight was overbooked.

Very common & useful phrasal verb Check out.- When you check out, you pay and leave.

  • After breakfast I checked out of the hotel.

Check out [Check something out].- When you check something out, you check that something is correct or it's what you want.

  • You've got to check the facts out before you start torturing yourself.
  • Hey, check this out!

Cheer up [Cheer up, cheer somebody up, cheer something up].- When you cheer up, you try to feel happier.

  • I got you this. I thought it might cheer you up.
  • I took him to the party because he needed cheering up.
  • Fancy a pint to cheer you up?

Chew over [Chew something over].- Think When you chew something over, you think about it or discuss it very carefully. Mull over, think over

  • I can't imagine Jeffrey being the kind of guy to openly argue, but rather chew it over in silence and - eventually - decide for himself.

Chip in.- 1 Contribute When you chip in, you contribute money towards something. Club together, pitch in

  • Local schools students, individuals and community groups have all chipped in to bring this area alive.

2 Interrupt When you chip in, you interrupt a conversation. Butt in

  • Some senior Army officials chipped in to say it was safe and there was no danger.

Clam up.- (insep) When you clam up, you refuse to speak. Shut up

  • I've tried talking to her about it, but she just clams up and changes the subject.
  • He would clam up when the conversation turned personal.

Clear off [Clear something off].- Leave When something clears off or you clear it off, it disappears or is removed.

  • During the night the fog cleared off.
  • We cleared off all the dirt and rock that was loose on the ground.

Clear up [Clear up, clear something up].- 1 (kitchen, mess) When you clear up, or clear something up, you tidy & clean or remove dirt and clean. Clean up

  • I cleared up the mess from the kids in the back garden.

2 (doubt, problem, disagreement, misunderstanding, confusion, issue, crime, mystery) When you clear something up, you find an answer or an explanation for something or settle it. Sort out

  • I think this misunderstanding will be cleared up soon.

3 (insep) (weather) When bad weather clears up, it improves. Brighten up

  • The weather is horrible at the moment. I hope it clears up later.

Climb down.- (insep) When you climb down, you admit you are wrong. Back down

  • Barclays and its supporters were eventually forced to climb down in the face of a fierce and sustained public backlash.

Clog up.- (insep) Block (arteries, pipe, drain, well) When something clogs up, it blocks. Choke up

  • Some types of weed have to be kept in check so that they don't clog up the pond, leaving the fish little space for swimming.

Close down [Close something down].- (factory, plant, business, company, shop, production, operations) When you close something down, you close it permanently. Shut down

Very common & useful phrasal verb Come across [Come across somebody].- (insep) When you come across somebody, you meet them by chance. Bump into , run into, stumble across

  • Not long ago, I came across an old friend from the gang. I won't say his name for privacy reasons.

Very common & useful phrasal verb Come across [Come across something].- (insep) (photo) When you come across something, you find it by chance.

  • This stretch of coastline is famous for the fossils that you just come across lying on the beach.

Come round, come around .- 1 (insep) When you come round, you recover consciousness. Come to, pass out, black out

  • I had no idea what had happened to me when I came round.

2 (insep) When you come round, you pay somebody a visit. Drop by

  • Bill and Ben are coming round tonight. We're going to watch a video.
  • Look, I'll come round to yours later, yeah?

Very common & useful phrasal verb Come on.- 1 (insep) When something comes on, it starts.

  • We had a good chat before the film came on.

2 (insep) When someting comes on, it makes progress. Get on

  • How's dinner coming on? I'm starving.

Come to.- (insep) When you come to, you recover consciousness. Come (a)round, pass out, black out

  • When Rose came to in the lifeboat, she could not remember what had happened.
  • When he came to, he was being loaded into an ambulance.

Come through.- (insep) (call, message, document, authorization, divorce, money, results, news) When something comes through, you recieve it.

  • As the final results came through, it couldn't have been any worse.

Come through [Come through something].- (insep) Survive (car crash, accident, operation, illness, war, ordeal, crisis) When you come through something, you survive or recover.

  • My cousin was in a serious car accident last week. Fortunately, he came through it with only minor injuries.

Come up.- 1 (insep) (issue, point, matter, question, subject) When something comes up, it's mentioned. Bring up

  • You'd better make sure you know these verbs because they always come up in the exam.

2 (insep) (job, vacancy) When something comes up, it appears.

  • As new jobs come up, we will contact students who have signed with the Odd Jobs database.

Come up with [Come up with something].- (insep) (plan, proposal, idea, theory, scheme, solution, suggestion, compromise, money, funding) When you come up with something, it occurs to you or you manage to find it: .

Cool down.- 1 (insep) When you cool down, you become less hot.

  • Let food cool down before putting it in the fridge or freezer.
  • Sweat is the body's natural way of cooling you down.

2 (insep) When you cool down, you become less excited.

  • I thought we could finally calmly discuss our quarrel, now that she had cooled down a bit.
  • She knew that she might regret it later, when she had cooled down.

Cop out [Cop out, cop out of something].- (responsibility) When you cop out or cop out of something, you avoid something because you are afraid or you don't want to keep your promise.

  • I hoped Maxwell would focus on the freedom issue, but he copped out.

Cotton on.- Understand (informal) When you cotton on, you begin to understand.

  • American trial lawyers are beginning to cotton on to the usefulness of using computerised graphics and other high-tech exhibits to impress judges and jurors.

Cough up [Cough something up].-(informal) (money, name) When you cough something up, you give somebody something because you have to. Pay up

  • The health minister said the federal government must eventually cough up more money if it wants to maintain a high-quality health system.

Count on [Count on somebody].- (insep) When you count on somebody, you rely on them to help or support you.

  • Ask Mary. You can always count on her to know the latest information.

Crack down [Crack down on somebody, crack down on something].- (informal) (criminals, vandals, extremists) When the government or the police crack down on something, they are much stricter than before. Clamp down on

  • We need to crack down on youth offenders with heavy penalties and teach them respect for other people.
  • Ever since September 11th the Saudi government has been under pressure to crack down on extremist groups.

Cut back [Cut something back, cut down on something].- (spending, public expenditure, expenses, production, budget, costs) When you cut something back or cut back on something, you reduce something to save money.

  • Kraft Foods, the maker of brands from Oreo cookies to Oscar Meyer bologna, announced plans Tuesday to cut back on sugar and fat in some products.

Very common & useful phrasal verb Cut down [Cut down, cut down on something].- (smoking, cigarettes, sugar, fatty foods; luxuries, spending, cost) When you cut down on something, you reduce the ammount you take of it.

  • People with diabetes are usually advised to cut down on sugar and sugary foods.

Cut down [Cut something down].- (tree, forest) When you cut something down, you make it fall to the ground by cutting it.

  • The tree was damaged in the storm so they had to cut it down.

Very common & useful phrasal verb Cut off [Cut something off].- (electricity, water) When you cut something off or something is cut off, you remove it by cutting or you separate or stop it somehow.

  • For years, the country was part of the soviet union and was cut off from the rest of europe.

 

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P R S T W Z

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