Go on – English Phrasal Verb – Online English Lessons

1. To go on is to happen.

Often used in continuous tenses.

If something is going on, it is happening.

‘What’s going on?’ means ‘What’s happening?’.

Examples of use:

a) If you see anything suspicious going on, telephone the police.

b) The windows are broken. What’s going on?

c) Mr Smith the office manager doesn’t know what goes on when he is not in the office.

2. To go on is to continue doing something.

Examples of use:

a) I asked the children to stop shouting, but they went on and on until I got cross.

b) You can’t go on going to bed so late. You will be ill.

3. To go on is to continue to exist or happen.

Examples of use:

a) The thunderstorm went on all night.

b) The road seemed to go on for miles.

4. To go on is to talk in an irritating way about something for a long time.

Examples of use:

a) Don’t talk to Mike about the Star Wars films. He will go on about them for hours!

b) Our neighbours went on and on about their holiday to Egypt.

5. Go on! is something that you say to encourage someone to do something now.

Informal English.

Examples of use:

a) There’s a vacant table over there. Sit down before someone else does. Go on!

b) Ask him if he will go to the cinema with you. Go on! Don’t be scared!

6. If you go on a diet you start a healthy heating plan so that you can lose weight.

Examples of use:

a) We’re going on a diet next week

b) That shirt is bit tight. You will have to go on a diet.

c) She went on a diet.

7. goings-on (plural noun) are unusual or amusing actions or events.

Example of use:

There’s been some strange goings-on over at Mrs Edwards’ house. We saw three police cars outside her house yesterday.

8. ongoing (adjective) – if something is ongoing it is in progress, growing or developing.

Example of use:

The plans for the new English language school are ongoing.

go on
present simple
go on and goes on
-ing form
going on
past simple
went on
past participle
gone on

Can you write a sentence with the phrasal verb ‘go on‘?

Do you know anyone who goes on and on about something?

This post is a very long one – it goes on and on! 🙂

Image © Carl Wycoff