Monday, January 17, 2011

Look (something) up


If you look someone or something up, you are looking for information from a reference source such as: the internet, the yellow pages, any kind of dictionary, an encyclopedia (or wikipedia), a telephone directory... facebook, Google Maps etc.

1. I wonder (ask myself) how many people actually use encyclopedias these days to look up facts, especially when the internet is so accessible.

2. In Brazil Orkut is so popular that everyone uses it to look up services and businesses as well as people.

3. Wikipedia is an incredible worldwide collaboration - a digital encyclopedia where you can look up almost any information you might be curious about.  

4. If you want to look up just about any movie, you can use the site: Internet Movie Database at You can find reviews and plot summaries amongst other things.

5. If you're interested in learning English slang, an excellent reference site where you can look up modern-day slang is:


  1. If you have questions about any phrasal verbs or expressions... go ahead and write them here... or write to me on my Facebook page:
    I will respond fairly quickly...

  2. Please, explain the expression "show the ropes" and don't forget the curious comics, of course.


  3. If you show somebody the ropes, you teach them how to do a task, a job or learn a skill step by step. If you are the one learning, you can "learn the ropes".

  4. Hello Frank, I'm having such a great time(it would be nice to post something about this expression that I learnt by heart: "such a ..." but still don't know what exactly means) in your blog with your comic strips.

    Otherwise, what makes difference between "look up" and "look for" is that you use "look up" for information and seeking it in reference sources, while "look for" it's just for things, people, maybe information but not referenced?

    Thank you so much for your time.

  5. Hey Antonio... nice questions...
    "look up" is usually from information sources and often involves an element of research, while "look for" is the most general way of saying that you're looking for anything, really... so even when you're looking something up, you are still looking for something... just that looking something up is more specific, related to looking for information from a reference source.