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Monday, July 12, 2010

Poll Results 94

Here was the question:

Correct or not? "Mel Gibson's Lawyer: Oksana Made Abuse Story Up"

Yes 21 (24%)
No 66 (75%)

Congrats to 24% of you.

"To make something up"/"to make up something" is what's called a phrasal verb. Most of the time, and in this case, you are allowed to split the verb and the other word(s) in the phrasal verb. You can say, for example, "I looked the word up" or "I looked up the word." You may prefer one way over another, but both are correct.

Other phrasal verbs cannot be split. For example, you have to say, "Get on with it"; you can't say, "Get on it with."


Lorelei said...

Okay, so it's correct to say something like, I picked up Randy today (in my car). Or I picked Randy up today (in my car)? I always get nervous with this one, and don't know if one is wrong, and don't know which one. So, I can go either way with it. Right?

The Sentence Sleuth said...

Yep, you can say pick Randy up or pick up Randy. If you used a pronoun, though, you could only say pick him up. You can't say pick up him.

Westley said...

In discussing this one, we came up with an example that COULD least it sounds right (which doesn't necessarily mean anything). If you were on a double date and there were scheduling issues, would it be grammatically correct to say, “I’ll pick up her, and you pick up him.”?

The Sentence Sleuth said...

I guess that would work conversationally, but it's probably not a good idea in formal English. :)

Anonymous said...

I felt the statement was incorrect because "Mel Gibson's Lawyer:" was inside the quotes. I thought the statement should read Mel Gibson's Lawyer: "Oksana Made Abuse Story Up."

The Sentence Sleuth said...

Sorry to confuse you. I put the quotation marks around the entire sentence I found so that readers would know it was a direct quotation.