Learn English – When to use split and split up


What should be used in below sentence: “split” or “split up”, and why?

We need to split up the background image of the website into two parts.

Best Answer

Generally speaking, "split up" involves moving two or more things away from each other, where "split" involves a simple division that may or may not mean the parts are detached.

For example:

  1. Let's split up to find the pirate booty.
  2. Let's split the pirate booty into four equal shares of dubloons.
  3. Let's split up the pirate booty.

In the first sentence, the group will separate and each person will search their own area. This kind of division means that the pieces will detach or come away from the whole.

In the second sentence, the booty will be divided into portions, but the dubloons are piled up on a table for instance. No one has taken their share yet.

In the third sentence, the booty is divided in order to be taken away by members of the group.

In your example, you would want to use

We need to split the background image of the website into two parts.

because the two parts will be divided, but remain together.

Related Question