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  1. #1
    Tan Elaine is offline Key Member
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    He started/ignited the engine of the car.

    He ignited/started the engine of the car.

    I would like to know whether 'ignited' has the same meaning as 'started' in the above sentence. One of my friends thinks the word is a fine substitute for 'started' in the above context.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    5jj's Avatar
    5jj is offline VIP Member
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    Re: He started/ignited the engine of the car.

    No. If you ignite something, you set fire to it.

  3. #3
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    Barb_D is offline Moderator
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    Re: He started/ignited the engine of the car.

    I would add that you only have to say "He started the car." Everyone will know that means the engine.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  4. #4
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is online now Harmless drudge
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    Re: He started/ignited the engine of the car.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post
    He ignited/started the engine of the car.

    I would like to know whether 'ignited' has the same meaning as 'started' in the above sentence. One of my friends thinks the word is a fine substitute for 'started' in the above context.

    Thanks.
    In internal combustion engines, ignition is involved; in French, the link is even clearer - the spark plugs are [I]bougies[/I (='candles'). But drivers, in general, are not pyromaniacs.

    b

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