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Thread: Some phrasal verbs

 
  1. #1
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    Default Some phrasal verbs

    Hello.
    I would like to know if my use of phrasal verbs in these sentences is right and if someone might correct all my mistakes:
    My cousin Thomas has invited me to his wedding. I must get back to him this afternoon without delay!
    After a few months of peace, feelings of violence started coming up.
    You think Im playing at something. But Im not, actually.
    It is imperative to calm those crowds down.
    Well, thank you.
    Best regards.

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    My only question is about "to play at". Perhaps it is new slang, slang used by much younger people, etc. I've certainly heard "to play" meaning "to joke, not be serious, etc." Otherwise, your phrasal verbs look great to me.

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    You think Im playing at something. But Im not, actually.

    This is fine.
    "Play at" means to pretend, or to do something with less than a full, sincere effort.

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    I concur with mariaklec. Examples: "I expect you to do that job right and not just play at it." or "She's just playing at being friendly."

    My only suggestion would be to make just one sentence:

    You think Im playing at something, but Im not, actually.
    vicente

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    "You think Im playing at something."

    Without adding context to the above, would you truly expect to hear the sentence in a conversation? By adding context, sense can be given to almost anything uttered under the sun, but the sentence is as above written. Sorry, folks, but I'm not buying it.

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    For me, the original sentence brings to mind a conversation between two people in a romantic relationship. One person is being accused of participating in the relationship without really being committed.

    "Play at" isn't the most formal way to express the idea, but it's also not slang or something only younger kids would say.

    I think Vicente's examples are good.

    If something is good in context, then it's good, right? Lot's of very correct utterances are hard to interpret out of context.

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    This is not some new slang. It's a phrasal verb that has been around forever.

    From UsingEnglish.com:

    Play at - Pretend to be something
    Example:
    He just PLAYS AT being a lawyer- he never wins a case.


    http://www.usingenglish.com/referenc...s/play+at.html

    It is also used, as mariaklec said, to pretend to be doing something. It's similar to "plays like", as in, "he plays like he is a lawyer". Again, as mariaklec says, not the most formal way of saying something but certainly acceptable and understood in everyday language.
    Last edited by vicente; 04-05-2009 at 02:22 PM.
    vicente

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    Thumbs up Re: Some phrasal verbs

    Well, thanks (to?) all of you for the answers, especially Vicente, howdy???
    Could anybody give me a synonym of To play at?
    This forum is great!!! (cool, would be fine?)
    My best wishes

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    some synonyms:

    pretend, feign, fake (there are others I'm sure)
    vicente

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    Default Re: Some phrasal verbs

    Hi everybody! I have to say I agree with vicente and mariaklec. According to Merriam Webster's Dictionary http://www.learnersdictionary.com/search/play

    play at [phrasal verb] play at (something) 1 : to do (something) in a way that is not serious ▪ They were only playing at trying to fix the problem.
    2 chiefly Brit : to play by pretending to be (someone or something) ▪ (Brit) She liked to play at doctors and nurses as a child. —often used in the phrase play at being (something) ▪ boys playing at being soldiers
    3 Brit —used to say in an annoyed way that you do not know the reason for someone's behavior ▪ What is he playing at? ▪ I have no idea what he was playing at.

    and the same info in the Longman Dictionary: http://www.learnersdictionary.com/search/play




    Maramaras here you have some examples of phrasal verbs (including play at) you'll find them useful:

    http://www.advanced-english-grammar....verb-play.html

    Hope it help!


    Just in case of doublt: http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/1096659
    Last edited by mem286; 04-05-2009 at 07:08 PM.

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