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Bring Up - Phrasal Verb

Video Overview

This video explains the meaning and use of the phrasal verb 'bring up' in English. We show you how to use it with some easy examples to help you learn this phrasal verb so you can use it in spoken and Business English.

Video Analysis

'Bring up' is a phrasal verb that is usually used in place of the verb 'raise', or in situations where something is made visible or becomes apparent. Instead of saying 'raise a child', you can use 'bring up a child'. Usually, when you talk about 'bringing up a child', it is associated with teaching them a particular set of beliefs - usually religious or political. So you can 'bring up a child as a Muslim', or 'bring your children up to be kind to others'.

Another meaning of 'bring up' is to 'raise a point' or 'draw attention to something', usually in the context of a meeting or a discussion. So you can 'bring up a point', 'bring up an issue', or 'bring something to somebody's attention'. You can also 'bring things up on a screen' in order to look at them or engage with them correctly. You might 'bring up a dialogue box' in order to speak to Customer Service; 'bring up an image' on the screen in order to show somebody; or 'bring up the next slide' in a presentation.

If you 'bring up your food', you vomit. If you are sick and visiting the doctor, they might ask you, "Have you brought up any of your food?"

'Bring up' is a versatile phrasal verb used in both professional and social contexts. Can you think of any other uses of 'bring up'? Let us know in the comments below.

Some other examples with 'bring up' are: 

A couple is getting ready to go for dinner with one of their parents. One of them doesn't want to discuss money around their parents:

"Please don't bring up the issue of our finances while my parents are around."

Many people believe that religion is becoming less important in some countries:

"Many parents are choosing to bring up their children as atheists."

A young couple is discussing the prospect of having children:

"We are not in a position to bring up a child at the moment."


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