Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Near or Close (Confusing Words Part 9 of 12)

Close or near? Now and then I see them used incorrectly. Both words refer to something at or within a short distance or interval or time or space. As one expert said, "Close is closer than near." 

We use close when we want to express immediate proximity (a close call, a close shave, a close encounter with death). Near refers to a narrow margin or approximation (a near escape, a near neighbor).

We use close to refer to human relationships: 
They’re a close family
Edith was closer to her sister than she was her mother.
Peter and I are close friends.
Near is used to refer to the future or to distance.
Experts say California can expect another earthquake in the near future.
He lives near me, less than two blocks away.

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