- 1 Post By BobK
"clear away" vs. "clear up"
Which word would you choose to fill in the gap following?
John tidied the living room while I cleared _____ the dirty dishes.
A. away B. out C. up D. off
I chose A and the answer key was also A. But when I looked up the dictionary to verify the answer, I found out that "clear away" and "clear up" had the same meaning - to make a place look tidier by putting things back where they belong. So why choose A not C?
Please help me. Thanks in advance.
Last edited by linhtho0211; 09-Jun-2009 at 15:30.
Re: "clear away" vs. "clear up"
I would choose C. Clearing up, when used with a direct object, is something you do after an accident. You clear up broken glass. When there is no object, just a general lack of tidiness, what you do is clear up, either with no object or with an object that relates to location: 'She cleared up the living room.'
Originally Posted by linhtho0211
If the dirty dishes are on the table in the dining room, the sequence (in my use of the verbs) is:
- Clear the table / Clear the dishes away [the dirty dishes are not ready to be put away - they have just been moved to the kitchen]
- Wash up
- Dry up
- Put the dishes away
The dictionary that told you the two phrasal verbs 'had the same meaning' was over-simplifying (probably for lack of space). There are contexts where their meanings are similar.
Last edited by BobK; 09-Jun-2009 at 15:00.
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