The central issue of the present article is the analysis of phrasal verbs (hereafter termed multiword verbs [MWVs]) from the perspective of construction grammars (Goldberg, 1995; Suttle and Goldberg, 2011). As is well known, English MWVs present special challenges to L2 learners due, among other things, to the shapelessness of their conceptual components and the ensuing impossibility to arrive at equivalent word-meaning correspondences (mappings) in the learners’ mother language (see Gillette et al., 1999). This brings us to the first theoretical claim of this paper – namely, that MWVs (also termed phrasal verbs, verb-particle collocations, verb-particle combinations etc.) are lexical chunks that can be retrieved by speakers either as wholes, without special recourse to syntactic parsing, or as verb-particle semantic associations (Cappelle et al., 2010). This idea is combined with the notion that MWVs inherit their syntax-semantics from prototypical Argument Structure Constructions (Goldberg, 2013a) within Verb Argument Constructions (VACs) frames. VACs are thus associated with prototype verbs like ‘go‘, ‘come’, ‘get’, ‘put’, etc., to project their meaning upon less-frequent verbs occupying a V-slot frame (a verbal position). It follows that MWVs function as hyponyms that express specific semantic nuances not available in prototype verbs. For example, in the sentence ‘Arya scooped up a rock and hurled it at Joffrey's head’ (George R. R. Martin, A Game of Thrones ), the verb scoop up suggests a caused motion usually conveyed by the verb LIFT, i.e. the prototype of the simple transitive Verb Argument Construction. From this vantage, it is suggested that a way to activate the weak verb-object interface is through its assignation to specific prototypes bootstrapping (providing an initial basis for) both the conceptualisation of the MWVs and their potential mapping to specific words (which I term inherited surface forms).