SLN 1. The secret language of the natives.

I guess you are all thinking, what on earth the secret language of the natives is? PHRASAL VERBS – things that separate the men from the boys in terms of knowledge and use of English! If you are already MAN enough to know the following – great, if you are in your infancy or teenage years, this post will help you on the way to manhood.

A ‘phrasal verb’ is a verb + 1 or more prepositions e.g. to put (verb) something off (preposition). Here the something can be a meeting/ appointment/ event etc. because the phrasal verb is used to mean ‘to postpone’ . E.g. “The meeting has been postponed.” or “The meeting has been put off.” As with all good things – they come in 5s –– so here are ‘your 5 a day’ phrasal verbs for today:

1.to take sb on = to employ sb = “We’ve ‘taken on 5 new IT specialists’ to meet the growing demand.”

2.to step down = to resign = “The Prime Minister was forced to ‘step down’ after a series of scandals.”

3. to call for sth = to publically ask for sth to happen = In the wake of the recent cyberattacks, police chiefs are ‘calling for’ more funding to combat cybercrime.

4. to put sth down to sth = to attribute to sth = Many scientists ‘put the rising sea levels down to’ global warming and the melting of the polar caps.

5. to tell sb off = to reprimand = I can’t believe he just ‘told him off’ in front of all the colleagues.

“what on earth … ?” (Was zum Teufel ….?), to separate the men from the boys (die Spreu vom Weizen trennen), in terms of (in puncto), infancy (Kindesalter auch hier: Anfangsphase), manhood (zum Mann warden), to postpone (verschieben), demand (Nachfrage), in the wake of (infolge), recent (neueste), to attribute to sth (zuschreiben), to reprimand (jdn zurechtweisen)

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