TAKE FOR – phrasal verb – meanings and examples

The English phrasal verb TAKE FOR has the following meaning:

1. Take for = to consider; to regard

(transitive) When you regard someone or something in a certain way, either correctly or mistakenly. You believe that someone is a certain way, though often wrongly.

  • My mother looks young. People often take her for my sister.

Yes, people think that when I am with my mother, that she is my sister because she looks very young. Of course, this is a mistake.

Notice how we need the object in the middle of the phrasal verb.
Take SOMEONE for … Take HER for… Take HIM for… You can also Take SOMETHING for …

Let’s see some more examples:

  • Everyone takes me for an angry person because of the way I dress. They don’t know that I really am a nice person.

Yes, people incorrectly think I am certain way because of what I wear.

  • Do you take me for a fool?

This is like saying, do you incorrectly think I am a fool or idiot?

  • Sorry, I took you for someone else.

This is a way of saying: Sorry, I mistakenly thought or believed you were someone else. My mistake.

  • Don’t take silence for anger.

This means don’t mistake or assume that silence means the person is angry. You may think they are angry, but maybe they are not.

Who do you take me for?

When someone says… Who do you take me for?
The person is saying:
Who do you think I am?
Do you really think I am that type of person?
You incorrectly think I am a certain way when I am not like that.

You may also be interested in our lesson about the English idiom Take For Granted which has a completely different meaning.

Idiom – Take for granted

When take for has the word granted after it (take for granted) it becomes an idiom with a completely different meaning.

See our lesson about the meaning of take for granted with examples sentences. This lesson also includes a video and summary chart.

Take for – Summary Chart

TAKE FOR - Meaning and examples of this English Phrasal Verb

Lesson tags: For, Idiom, Phrasal Verbs, Take
Back to: Phrasal Verbs in English > Phrasal Verbs with TAKE

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