Phrasal Verb


Example Sentence

pull ahead

To move in front.

On the final lap, a fellow competitor pulled ahead of him.

pull apart

To separate.

They pulled the two fighting cocks apart to end the cockfighting contest. 


To criticize harshly.

His suggestion was pulled apart as impractical.

pull at

To pull quickly and sometimes repeatedly.

The little boy pulled at the puppy’s tail.

To pull quickly and repeatedly.

He pulled at her coat sleeve.

pull away

To go or leave, as used for a vehicle.

The ambulance pulled away from where it was parked and sped down the highway. 

To move ahead.

On the final lap, he pulled away from the other runners. 

To withdraw or take away.

He tried to hold her hand, but she pulled it away.

pull back

To gain a point, goal, etc. 

The visiting team pulled a goal back to end the match in a draw. 

To withdraw.

The soldiers were ordered to pull back from their positions around the city.

pull down

To demolish.

They had to pull down the old disused crumbling building.

pull in

To arrive.

The train pulled in just as we arrived at the station.

To come to a stop.

I pulled in at the side of the road to make a quick phone call.

To take someone into custody.

A few of the protesters were pulled in when they clashed with the police.

To attract.

Tennis is a popular sport that always pulls in large crowds.

To earn.

In this country, you don’t pull in much as a teacher.

pull off

To accomplish by effort, skill, or courage in spite of difficulties.

Three men pulled off the biggest bank robbery in town.

To separate and go in a different direction.

We pulled off the highway and stopped for a break.

pull out

To withdraw.

They pulled out of the business deal when they sensed something amiss.

To depart.

We waved to them as the train pulled out of the station.

To retreat.

The troops will be pulled out as soon as order is restored to the area.

pull over

To stop a vehicle at the side of a road.

The policeman waved me to pull over.

pull through

To get through an illness or difficult situation.

The doctors expected him to pull through despite the severe injuries he sustained in the accident.

pull up

To stop a vehicle.

He pulled up outside a convenience store.

put across

To come out with ideas, etc. in a way that is easily understood.

She put her opposing views across during the discussion.

To make something easily understood.

The book puts across complex ideas in a way anyone can understand.

To communicate one’s ideas to other people so as to promote oneself.

The candidate put herself across very well to the voters.

put aside

To save money for a specific purpose.

Every month she puts aside a sum of money to buy a car.

To give time to an activity.

She puts aside an hour each day to meditate.

To suddenly ignore what one is doing and turn one’s attention to something else.

Everyone put aside what they were doing and tuned in to a news flash about a major explosion at the city’s airport.

To ignore temporarily.

We are going to get the two sides to put aside their differences.

put away

To put something back in its regular place.

The boys rushed to put away the toys when they heard their mummy is home.

To confine someone to a place such as prison, hospital, etc.

He should be put away for being so violent, especially when he is drunk.

To save money.

We put away as much as we can to meet future needs.

To kill quickly in a humane way.

They put away the badly diseased stray dog.

put back

To return something to its usual place.

You must put the books back when you have finished with them.

To postpone.

The members have unanimously agreed to put back the party election.

put by

To set aside money for the future.

I’m putting by an amount of money each month for a new bike.

put down

To forcibly put an end to riot, rebellion, etc.

The public demonstration was brutally put down by troops.

To criticize.

This heartless fellow seemed to enjoy putting me down when there were people around.

To kill an animal painlessly.

He’s not put down his lame horse.

To pay a sum of money as the first instalment.

I think we have had enough to put down on a new car.

To regard something as being caused by something else.

The fans put the loss of their team down to too many inaccurate passing of the ball.

To write down something such as name, phone number, etc.

Everyone who entered the place had to put their names down in the visitors’ book.

To leave something on a surface such as the floor, etc.

You can put the box down in that corner (of the room).

To return the telephone receiver to its proper place.

She put down the telephone and cursed loudly.

To include in a list.

You haven’t put a couple of items down on the shopping list.

To drop off passengers.

He told the taxi driver to put us down at the library.

put forward

To propose for consideration.

He put forward some very convincing arguments.

To show a later time.

Some countries put their clocks forward at certain time of the year.

To start at an earlier time.

The opening time of the exhibition has been put forward owing to the large crowd waiting to go in.

put in

To use up time doing something.

For the past week, we had to put in extra time to complete it before the deadline.

To make a formal offer.

The consortium put in a multimillion pound bid for the football club.

To spend time, energy, effort, etc working on something.

All the team members have put in a great deal of effort.

To submit a claim.

The workers put in individual claims arising out of accidents at work.

To bring to the attention of someone.

If you meet the boss, put in a good word for me.

To present oneself for a short time.

I feel I must put in at least a brief appearance at the party.

put in for

To make a request.

We have put in for a room with a view of the sea.

put off

To arrange for something to take place at a later time.

Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today.

To distract.

She’s preparing for her exams and will not allow anything to put her off.

To cause someone to feel dislike.

Her highly critical attitude really put me off.

To cancel or postpone an appointment with someone.

He keeps asking her to go out with him, but she keeps putting him off.

put on

To pretend have a particular quality, appearance, feeling, behavior, etc.

Despite her hurt feelings she put on a smiling face.

To add to one’s weight.

She is the only one in the family who is putting on excess weight.

To wear clothes.

She put a pair of faded jeans and a sweater on before she went outside.

To cause someone to believe something that is not true.

I thought she was putting me on when she said she’s taking me out for dinner.

To risk a sum of money on an outcome of a race, game, etc.

I will not put money on that horse.

To bring something into operation or use.

He had to suddenly put on the brakes to try to avoid hitting the dog.

To add.

The airline is putting on extra flights for the sporting event.

To organize a public event.

They are putting on a firework display to celebrate the ceremonial occasion.

put out

To extinguish.

The firefighters took hours to put out the huge fire.

put through

To pay for someone’s education.

John’s parents managed to put him and his siblings through university.

To cause someone to undergo an unpleasant experience.

The group of tourists was put through a terrible two-day ordeal.

To connect someone by telephone to another person.

She put me through to a wrong person.

To transfer a telephone call from one person to another person.

Ask the receptionist to put your call through to my room.

put to

To present something for consideration or discussion.

After the speeches were delivered, we were allowed to put questions to the speakers.

To challenge someone to deny the truth of an allegation or statement.

I put it to you that you have been lying about how you spend the company’s money.

put up

To display considerable skill in a contest.

Despite being an underdog, the team put up an outstanding performance.

To temporarily provide lodging for someone.

Where are we going to put up for the weekend at the resort when all the hotels are fully booked?

To build.

They are putting up a bus terminus north of the city where the wasteland is.

To make money available in advance for a particular purpose.

He managed to persuade his friend to put up the money for the venture.

To erect.

They put up a monument to the firefighters who lost their lives.

To nominate.

The party is putting up six female candidates in the general election.

To place something prominently so that it may readily be seen.

Election posters were put up all over the city.

To make payment for the release of an accused person.

A wealthy uncle has put up bail for him.

To stay somewhere.

We lost our way and had to put up at a cave for the night.

put up to

To encourage someone to act in a wrong way.

He has been playing truant from school lately, and we think someone must have put him up to it.

put up with

To be subjected to a bad or unpleasant situation that is continuing for a long time.

He is not going to put up with his nagging wife any longer.