Podcast #139 Phrasal Verbs with COME – Part 1

Published in the category Grammar and Usage, Phrasal Verbs


The phrasal verb come about can have the same meaning as the verb happen.

You became the assistant to the mayor? How did that come about?


Another meaning of come about is come into being.

How did the universe come about?



The phrasal verbs come across and come upon can mean to find by chance.

Look at this wonderful old book of maps. I came across it in a bookstore.

I came upon it in a bookstore.

I was walking in the mountains and I came across a herd of sheep.

I came upon a herd of sheep.



To come across with something means to deliver something that is expected or owed.

She came across with the money she owed me.


The simple phrasal verb come across can mean the same as come across with if the situation has been described earlier.

He was five days late with the list of people I needed. But he finally came across.



The expression come across as means to give the appearance or impression of having a certain type of character or personality. The examples that follow show four different ways to say the same thing.

He came across as dependable.

He came across as being dependable.

He came across as a dependable person.

He came across as being a dependable person.



To come after a person means to try to find that person, usually in order to punish him.

The police came after the murderer.


To come after a thing means to look for that thing in order to do something harmful to the owner.

No data is safe anymore. Hackers even come after our medical records.



The meaning of come along with is to accompany.

She came along with us to the mall.

The doctor’s office is this way. Please come along with me.


Very often come along is used in speaking to a child who is supposed to be accompanying you, but is falling behind because he is busy looking at something.

We don’t have time to look at the birds now. Just come along.


Finally, you can use come along to refer to the progress of some process.

We started building a new garage last month. It’s coming along very nicely.

How is your career coming along?



When something comes apart it breaks into separate pieces.

This chair can be shipped in three pieces. It comes apart very easily.

Everything was going wrong for Celia. She felt like her life was coming apart.



The phrasal verbs come around and come round are identical in meaning. Come round is what you hear in British English, while come around is what you most often hear in American English. In this lesson we will use the American form come around.

Come around can mean to visit someone in their home.

I’ll be home tonight. Why don’t you come around for a beer?


Come around can mean to change your mind or opinion.

He absolutely did not want to sell his house even though he was too old to live alone. But finally he came around.


When a repeating event, like a holiday or a season of the year, happens at its usual time, you can say that it has come around again.

I can’t believe it’s so cold. Winter seems to come around so quickly.


When a person has lost consciousness, they come around when they regain consciousness.

He had received a heavy dose of anesthesia during the operation. It took him two hours to come around.

Make a comment

The ESL Aloud podcast lessons are designed for people who want to increase their abilities in speaking English as a second language (ESL).