Phrasal Verbs

border on

This page is about the phrasal verb border on


If something like an action or an attitude borders on something more extreme, it is close to being that extreme.


verge on, come close to

For example

  • border on sth His fear of the government borders on paranoia.

  • border on sth The fanatical excitement you see at some political rallies in the south borders on mass hysteria.

Almost always used in relation to a negative extreme, though occasionally it's used in a more positive context, as in "his talent borders on genius".

Quick Quiz

Many legal experts believe the government's decision to declare war on the basis of falsified evidence borders on being

a. heroic

b. criminal

c. unfriendly

Phrasal verbs grammar

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Contributor: Matt Errey