Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 14
  1. #1
    joeoct is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    143
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Hi,

    Are the phrasal verbs more acceptable than their one-word equivalents in formal writing?

    Thanks
    Last edited by joeoct; 20-Jul-2011 at 02:49.

  2. #2
    Mannysteps is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Portugal
      • Current Location:
      • Portugal
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    261
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Quote Originally Posted by joeoct View Post
    Hi,

    Are the phrasal verbs more acceptable than their one-word equivalents in formal writing?

    Thanks,
    Joe
    Not a Teacher

    In my view, your question does not make entire sense, since both kinds are used in formal writing. Maybe if you were to give some examples the question would make complete sense.

    M.

  3. #3
    joeoct is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    143
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Mannysteps View Post
    Not a Teacher

    In my view, your question does not make entire sense, since both kinds are used in formal writing. Maybe if you were to give some examples the question would make complete sense.

    M.
    Ok, here they are:

    call off - cancel
    find out - discover
    hold up - delay
    leave out - omit
    pick out - choose
    put off - postpone
    talk over - discuss
    try out - test
    look into - investigate
    go over - review
    go on - continue

    What is more natural when writing a formal letter - to use the phrasal verbs on the left, or their equivalents on the right? (or simply it can't be generalised - it depends on the sense of a sentence)

    Thanks,
    Joe

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    23,806
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Quote Originally Posted by joeoct View Post
    Ok, here they are:

    call off - cancel
    find out - discover
    hold up - delay
    leave out - omit
    pick out - choose
    put off - postpone
    talk over - discuss
    try out - test
    look into - investigate
    go over - review
    go on - continue

    What is more natural when writing a formal letter - to use the phrasal verbs on the left, or their equivalents on the right? (or simply it can't be generalised - it depends on the sense of a sentence)

    Thanks,
    Joe
    As always, context is everything. It depends on the tone of the sentence, the person you're writing to (formally or otherwise). My personal feeling is that both the verbs and the phrasal verbs would be equally acceptable in any piece of writing.

  5. #5
    joeoct is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    143
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    As always, context is everything. It depends on the tone of the sentence, the person you're writing to (formally or otherwise). My personal feeling is that both the verbs and the phrasal verbs would be equally acceptable in any piece of writing.
    If there is an individual case when I don't know clearly whether to use phrasal verb, I will ask you on UsingEnglish.
    Last edited by joeoct; 18-Jun-2011 at 17:47.

  6. #6
    Mar Rojo is offline Banned
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Ireland
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    48
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    And there are many examples of formal English on the Internet. Why not look through a few to see whether phrasal verbs are used?
    Last edited by Mar Rojo; 18-Jun-2011 at 18:25.

  7. #7
    Barb_D's Avatar
    Barb_D is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    17,394
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    My immediate reaction is that all of the one-word subsitutes are "fancier" words than the phrasal verbs.

    That doesn't make the phrasal verbs unsuitable, but if you think that "fancier" = "formal" and you want formal, then I would suggest you use the words on the right.

    However, I'm not a fan of fancier. I'm fine with finding something out and don't need to discover it.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  8. #8
    Mar Rojo is offline Banned
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Ireland
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    48
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post

    However, I'm not a fan of fancier. I'm fine with finding something out and don't need to discover it.
    Though it is interesting that the latinate verb, "discover", is much more common in academic papers than "find out".

  9. #9
    riquecohen's Avatar
    riquecohen is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • Brazil
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    5,721
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Mar Rojo View Post
    Though it is interesting that the latinate verb, "discover", is much more common in academic papers than "find out".
    This is perhaps the case, but I can't imagine using "discover" if I want to find out the starting time of a film, whether a hotel accepts pets, or if my video rental-store has received a recently released DVD.

  10. #10
    Mar Rojo is offline Banned
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Ireland
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    48
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Phrasal Verbs vs Verbs

    but I can't imagine using "discover" if I want to find out the starting time of a film, whether a hotel accepts pets, or if my video rental-store has received a recently released DVD.
    And no one suggested you should, so what is the point you are trying to make?

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Phrasal verbs
    By AdeExpress in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 02-Jun-2010, 20:53
  2. Help on Phrasal verbs and their equivalent one word verbs
    By kiranlegend in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 21-Jul-2009, 19:50
  3. phrasal verbs
    By tina11 in forum English Phrasal Verbs
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 15-Nov-2008, 15:34
  4. Verbs, prepositions and, ugh, phrasal verbs!...
    By tangelatm in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-Jan-2007, 15:00
  5. phrasal verbs---a-verbs
    By littlebaby in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 17-Oct-2006, 21:05

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •