intransitive phrasal verb: back down


The phrasal verb I have for you this week is “back down”. It is intransitive which means that it doesn’t take an object. It is used when we want to talk about a person who gives up trying to win an argument or challenge with another person. For example:

Jason never wins an argument because he always backs down if you challenge him.

Whenever someone wanted to fight my brother in high school, he backed down immediately. He really hates fighting.

The strike continued for a long time because both the company and the employees refused to back down. In the end, the company backed down first.

I hate debating things with Tom. Once he starts arguing about something, he never backs down.

This expression can be used in any situation because it’s neither formal nor casual.

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