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Prepositional Verb Dictionary

The prepositional verb is a common intransitive verb form in the English language. Prepositional verbs consist of a verb plus a prepositional phrase that functions as a verb phrase complement. For more information about prepositional verbs, see Prepositional Verbs and Verb Phrase Complements. See also the Phrasal Verb Dictionary.

A

abide by – Abide by the rules.
accede to – Accede to my demands.
account for – Account for the discrepancy.
adapt to – Adapt to the changes.
add to – Add to pile.
adhere to – Adhere to the rules.
adjust to – Adjust to the situation.
admit to – Admit to the lie.
agree on – Agree on the solution.
agree to – Agree to the deal.
agree with – Agree with your sister.
allow for – Allow for traffic.
allude to – Allude to the correct answer.
amount to – Amount to something.
apologize for – Apologize for the outburst.
appeal to – Appeal to my better nature.
approve of – Approve of the changes.
argue about – Argue about the decision.
argue with – Argue with the seller.
arrange for – Arrange for a car.
ask for – Ask for Brian.
aspire to – Aspire to a lofty position.
associate with – Associate with good people.
atone for – Atone for your sins.

B

bask in – Bask in your success.
beg for – Beg for a treat.
begin with – Begin with a fun anecdote.
believe in – Believe in yourself.
belong to – Belong to supportive groups.
benefit from – Benefit from the situation.
bet on – Bet on the outcome.
bid on – Bid on the job.
boast about – Boast about your triumphs.

C

care about – Care about others.
care for – Care for your pets.
cater to – Care to your significant other.
cheat on – Cheat on your taxes.
collide with – Collide with the running back.
comment on – Comment on my essay.
communicate with – Communicate with your boss.
compete against – Compete against the rival team.
compete with – Compete with your brother.
complain about – Complain about the circumstances.
concentrate on – Concentrate on your studies.
confess to – Confess to the crime.
consent to – Consent to the procedure.
consist of – Consist of equal parts courage and fear.
contend with – Contend with the situation.
contribute to – Contribute to the project.
cope with – Cope with your loss.
correspond to – Dog paws correspond to human feet.
correspond with – Correspond with your teacher.
culminate in – Culminate in success.

D

deal with – Deal with the situation.
decide against – Decide against the purchase.
decide on – Decide on your plans.
defer to – Defer to the easiest answer.
depart from – Depart from the norm.
depend on – Depend on me.
descend from – Children descend from parents.
detract from – Detract from the bigger issue.
differ from – Differ from your neighbors.
disagree with – Disagree with him.
disapprove of – Disapprove of his actions.
dispose of – Dispose of the evidence.
dote on – Dote on your spouse.
dream about – Dream about your future.
dream of – Dream of a better life.

E

elaborate on – Elaborate on your plans.
emerge from – Emerge from your coma.
enquire about – Enquire about the sale.
experiment on – Experiment on the recipe.

F

fear for – Fear for your safety.
fight about – Fight about important issues.
fight against – Fight against injustice.
fight for – Fight for your rights.
focus on – Focus on the good.
forget about – Forget about the bad times.

G

gamble on – Gamble on your future.
gawk at – Gawk at the accident.
gaze at – Gaze at the beautiful painting.
glare at – Glare at the obnoxious person.
gloat about – Gloat about your success.
grieve for – Grieve for your loss.
gripe at – Gripe at your children.

H

hear about – Did you hear about the rumor?
hope for – Hope for the best.

I

impinge on – Impinge on the neighbors.
impose on – Impose on your parents.
indulge in – Indulge in some designer shoes.
infringe on – Infringe on my rights.
insist on – Insist on a free meal.
insure against – Insure against fires.
interfere in – Interfere in her business.
interfere with – Interfere with the plans.
invest in – Invest in a good pair of shoes.

J

jabber about – Jabber about an interesting topic.
joke about – Joke about your misfortunes.

K

know about – Know about the facts.

L

laugh about – Laugh about the little things.
laugh at – Laugh at good jokes.
learn about – Learn about English grammar.
listen for – Listen for the storm.
listen to – Listen to the music.
long for – Long for a better life.
look at – Look at the paintings.
luxuriate in – Luxuriate in a bubble bath.

M

meet with – Meet with your adviser.

N

nod at – Nod at me.

O

object to – Object to inequality.
operate on – Operate on the patient.

P

pander to – Pander to your clients.
participate in – Participate in the discussion.
pay for – Pay for your own meal.
persist in – Persist in your goals.
plan on – Plan on uncertainty.
pray for – Pray for your enemies.
prepare for – Prepare for the exam.
provide for – Provide for your loved ones.

Q

quarrel with – Quarrel with your friends.

R

react to – React to the chaos.
reconcile with – Reconcile with your parents.
recover from – Recover from your illness.
refer to – Refer to the appendix.
reflect on – Reflect on your mistakes.
relate to – Relate to others.
rely on – Rely on your friends.
renege on – Renege on your promise.
reply to – Reply to the email.
resign from – Resign from the position.
respond to – Respond to the criticism.
result in – Mistakes can result in learning.
retire from – Retire from your job.

S

search for – Search for the truth.
shout at – Shout at the hoodlums.
smile at – Smile at strangers.
speak to – Speak to the manager.
specialize in – Specialize in your passion.
spy on – Spy on your neighbors.
stand for – Stand for something good.
stare at – Stare at the accidents.
subscribe to – Subscribe to the newsletter.
succeed at – Succeed at your goals.
succeed in – Succeed in earning a degree.
suffer from – Suffer from misfortune.

T

talk about – Talk about the past.
talk to – Talk to your mother.
tamper with – Tamper with the evidence.
tend to – Tend to the garden.
think about – Think about your mistakes.
think of – Think of me often.
tinker with – Tinker with the machine.
toast to – Toast to the president.
turn to – Turn to your partner.

U

V

vie for – Vie for his attention.
vouch for – Vouch for me.
vote for – Vote for the best candidate.
vote against – Vote against the dictator.

W

wait for – Wait for the bus.
warn about – Warn about injustice.
wish for – Wish for world peace.
work for – Work for a good company.
work on – Work on your shortcomings.
worry about – Worry about the future.
wrestle with – Wrestle with the decision.
write about – Write about the world.
write to – Write to your grandmother.

X

Y

yap about – Yap about nothing important.
yearn for – Yearn for the past.

Z

References

Cambridge international dictionary of phrasal verbs. 1997. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

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