Ring & Go Off – English Vocabulary Lesson

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My alarm clock goes off at 6:15 every morning. It rings quite loudly, but I usually hit the snooze button. If I hit that button, the alarm clock goes off again at 6:25. Then, I need to get up and get ready for work.

For today’s English vocabulary lesson, let’s have a look at a verb and a phrasal verb that have a similar meaning; ring and go off.

I’m sure you are familiar with ring, which means to make a sound. Ring is both a transitive and intransitive verb, which means you can use it with an object or without an object:

  • I ring the dinner bell when dinner is ready. transitive
  • The fireman rang the alarm to get the firemen ready to leave the firehouse. transitive
  • The alarm clock rings at 6:15. intransitive
  • The smoke alarm rings whenever I make toast. intransitive

We use go off to mean begin ringing. Now, I know that off usually has the meaning of stopping or not doing something, but go off is a phrasal verb, which is an idiom. Thus go off means to begin making sound or to begin ringing Go off is an intransitive phrasal verb, so it doesn’t take an object.

  • My alarm clock goes off at 6:15 every morning.
  • The smoke alarm went off when I made toast.
  • The signal goes off when the rice is finished boiling.

What time does your alarm clock go off in the morning? Leave a comment below and let me know.
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