Separable and Inseparable Phrasal Verbs

on Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Picked It Up OR Picked Up It?

Separable and Inseparable Phrasal Verbs

Some phrasal verbs separate the verb from the preposition(s) (or particles) while others do not. Phrasal verbs are either separable or inseparable.

Separable Phrasal Verbs
Separable phrasal verbs can either remain together when using an object that is a noun or noun phrase, or separate:
The branch manager put off the collateral requirement until the company could provide more documentation.

This company will put up a record of their assets and liabilities for review.

It is important to remember that separable phrasal verbs MUST be separated when using a pronoun as an object of the phrasal verb.
Don't forget to look the issuing bank up online.

Peter let the adjustable rate preferred stock get sold on Tuesday.

Inseparable Phrasal Verbs
Inseparable phrasal verbs never separate and must remain together whether a noun, noun phrase or pronoun is used.
The branch manager called to go over my bank transfer order.

We participated in an online survey of a bank and won a gold standard account

Usage Tip
When you are not sure whether a phrasal verb is separable or inseparable, ALWAYS use a noun or noun phrase and DO NOT separate. As separable phrasal verbs must separate when using a pronoun, using the noun or noun phrase will help you avoid this problem and will always be correct.


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