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 English Phrasal Verbs 


A phrasal verb is a verb followed by a preposition or an adverb; the combination creates a meaning different from the original verb.

Alphabetical lists of commonly-used phrasal verbs in English.

 Alphabetical List  L 


  • laugh off
    • Make light of something; minimise.
      "The author laughed off the unflattering review of his latest book."

  • lay off
    • Fire, dismiss, let go.
      "Many factories have had to lay off workers."

  • leaf through
    • Turn over pages quickly.
      "Sophie leafed through a magazine in the waiting room."

  • leak out
    • Become known to the public unofficially (information).
      "News of the planned merger leaked out before the end of the negotiations."

  • leave out
    • Omit; not mention.
      "Tom's name was left out of the report so he got no credit for his work."

  • let down
    • Disappoint.
      "You promised to come to the party, so don't let me down!

    • Lengthen (skirt, pants).
      "The skirt is too short? We can have it let down for you if you like."

  • light up
    • Illuminate.
      "1 watched the floodlights light up the castle."
      "Her face always lights up when she sees her grandson."
      "The screen lights up when you turn on a computer."

  • line up
    • Stand in a row.
      "The books were lined up neatly on the shelves."

  • live through
    • Experience something and survive.
      "My grandparents lived through two wars and learned to survive."

  • liven up
    • Make something livelier or more attractive.
      "We've got to find a way to liven up the presentation somehow. "

  • log in/on (to)
    • "Access a program or database using a password."
      "You need to log in to your account before you can use our services."

  • log off
    • End access to a database.
      "First log off the system and then turn off the computer."

  • look after
    • Take care of.
      "A baby sitter looks after the children when their parents go out."

  • look ahead
    • Think of the future.
      "Don't keep thinking about the past . It's time to look ahead and plan the future.



  • look away
    • Turn your head away so as not to see.
      "The scene was so horrible that I had to look away."

  • look back on
    • Remember the past.
      "My parents and their friends like to look back on "the good old days"."

  • look down on
    • Consider as inferior.
      "He tends to look down on anyone who is not successful."

  • look for
    • Try to find something.
      "Jane went shopping to look for an outfit for the wedding."

  • look forward to
    • Await or anticipate with pleasure.
      "I look forward to seeing you next week-end."

  • look into
    • Examine or investigate.
      "Our after-sales service will look into the matter and call you back."

  • look on
    • Be a spectator at an event.
      "Billy didn't take part in the fight. He just looked on. "

  • look out
    • Be careful; pay attention.
      "Look out! There's a car coming."

  • look through
    • Examine, usually quickly.
      "I'll look through my mail to see if I can find your message."

  • look up to
    • Admire.
      "He was a wonderful teacher and many students looked up to him."

  • lose out
    • Be unsuccessful; suffer a loss.
      "I'm the one who will lose out if our plan goes wrong."

  • lose out on
    • Miss or be deprived of something.
      "I watched the documentary until the end so as not to lose out on anything."
      "Because I left before the end of the year I lost out on the annual bonus."

  • lose out to
    • Be less successful than another.
      "Jose was called for an interview but he lost out to a candidate who spoke fluent English."

More Phrasal Verbs: 

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



Please note that British English spelling is used on this website.