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  1. #1
    ostap77 is offline Key Member
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    did good to people of the state or for the people

    Do we do good to somebody or for somebody?

  2. #2
    susiedqq is offline Key Member
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    Depends on what you want to say:

    He was good to me so I married him.

    That marriage was good for the entire family.

  3. #3
    ostap77 is offline Key Member
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    Quote Originally Posted by susiedqq View Post
    Depends on what you want to say:

    He was good to me so I married him.

    That marriage was good for the entire family.
    Would there be a hint ? I'd say I'm 90% sure I got it. We say that someone is good to us or some thing is good for us?
    Last edited by ostap77; 07-Jan-2011 at 22:19.

  4. #4
    5jj's Avatar
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    Quote Originally Posted by ostap77 View Post
    Would there be a hint ? I'd say I'm 90% sure I got it. We say that someone is good to us or some thing is good for us?
    No.
    My grandson is good for me. He keeps me active in mind and body.

    Perhaps in my declining years, when he is older, he will be good to me.

  5. #5
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    "For" usually means that something is done for someone's benefit and brings them something (luck, money, satisfaction, acknowledgement, etc.) "To" normally means direction and indicates that something "goes" from object 1 to object 2. For example:

    I bought presents for my mother
    I gave a letter to her

    In sentence #1 it's obvious that my mother will be happy when she has got her present, whereas in the sentence with "letter" we don't know whether she will be pleased after reading it or vive versa.

  6. #6
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    Quote Originally Posted by ostap77 View Post
    Do we do good to somebody or for somebody?
    1. He did good to the people of the state.
    2. He did good for the people of the state.

    #1 means that the people of the state were the recipients of the "good".

    #2 would mean that he did good on behalf of the people of the state.

    #1 would be (I think) the meaning you intend. #2 would be an obscure and much less commonly used formation.

    Best wishes,

    MrP

    Not a professional ESL teacher.

  7. #7
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    To be good to people is to be benevolent -- you wish them well and try to help them. It is a personal action you take.

    He is my nephew and I enjoy being good to him.

    To be good for people is to be beneficial. It is not a personal action, but the result of a quality of an object.

    Carrots are good for you. Hard work is good for you. It builds strength and character. So is being charitable. It improves your karma.

    However, when it comes to _doing_ good as opposed to being good, I think you can only do it for people, not to people.
    Last edited by probus; 08-Jan-2011 at 07:49.

  8. #8
    ostap77 is offline Key Member
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    Quote Originally Posted by milan2003_07 View Post
    "For" usually means that something is done for someone's benefit and brings them something (luck, money, satisfaction, acknowledgement, etc.) "To" normally means direction and indicates that something "goes" from object 1 to object 2. For example:

    I bought presents for my mother
    I gave a letter to her

    In sentence #1 it's obvious that my mother will be happy when she has got her present, whereas in the sentence with "letter" we don't know whether she will be pleased after reading it or vive versa.
    I would assume you didn't understand the question. I'm not talking about prepositions in general. I specifically meant the context given in my first post.
    Last edited by ostap77; 08-Jan-2011 at 21:34.

  9. #9
    5jj's Avatar
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    Re: did good to people of the state or for the people

    Quote Originally Posted by ostap77 View Post
    I would assume you didn't understand the question. I'm not talking about prepositions in general. I specifically meant the context given in my first post.
    I would assume that milan did understand your question. I would also assume that you did not understand that his post was an attempt to make a general, helpful, observation.

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