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    #1

    lead to and lead up to

    Many things led up to the First World War.
    Many things led to the First World War.

    Do they sound natural?

    Is it a way to say that many things brought about the First World War?

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    #2

    Re: lead to and lead up to

    The first sentence sounds better for what you are trying to say.

    "Many things led up to the First World War."

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    #3

    Re: lead to and lead up to

    Yes and Yes.

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