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Burn down vs Burn up

burn down—(of buildings) be destroyed by fire:

  • The old house burned down last night in the big fire.

burn up —(of objects other than buildings)

1. be consumed by fire:

  • We found our tent burned to the ground and all my books burned up.

2. be destroyed by great heat:

  • Most meteors have burned up completely when they are still at great heights.