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Thread: what for?

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    Default what for?

    hi all. I have been thinking whether it is correct to say what for to mean 'why' in a casual way. I heard my friends around me using it very often, yet one of my English speaker friend told me that it was incorrect. It wasnt in the proper grammar, she said. what do u guys think of it?

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    Default Re: what for?

    Quote Originally Posted by darren
    hi all. I have been thinking whether it is correct to say what for to mean 'why' in a casual way. I heard my friends around me using it very often, yet one of my English speaker friend told me that it was incorrect. It wasnt in the proper grammar, she said. what do u guys think of it?


    I use it very often too. For spoken language i think it's OK. But you remind me of another question.

    What are the differences between 'what for' and 'for what' ???

    sabrina

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    Default Re: what for?

    Quote Originally Posted by darren
    hi all. I have been thinking whether it is correct to say what for to mean 'why' in a casual way. I heard my friends around me using it very often, yet one of my English speaker friend told me that it was incorrect. It wasnt in the proper grammar, she said. what do u guys think of it?
    I assume you are asking about scenarios like the following:

    A: I want you to come over right away.
    B: What for?

    A: I want you to come over right away.
    B: Why?

    In spoken English, many rules of standard grammar are suspended. In these cases, one is asking a question using only one or two words. The rest is understood. In my opinion, "what for" is a bit more informal than "why", but it is used commonly.

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    Default Re: what for?

    Quote Originally Posted by blacknomi
    Quote Originally Posted by darren
    hi all. I have been thinking whether it is correct to say what for to mean 'why' in a casual way. I heard my friends around me using it very often, yet one of my English speaker friend told me that it was incorrect. It wasnt in the proper grammar, she said. what do u guys think of it?


    I use it very often too. For spoken language i think it's OK. But you remind me of another question.

    What are the differences between 'what for' and 'for what' ???

    sabrina
    In these types of situations, What for? and For what? mean the same thing.

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    Default Re: what for?

    Expert Mike,

    Thank you for always providing vivid examples. It facilitates my comprehension. I'm glad to have a teacher like you.

    sabrina

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    Default Re: what for?

    Quote Originally Posted by blacknomi
    Expert Mike,

    Thank you for always providing vivid examples. It facilitates my comprehension. I'm glad to have a teacher like you.

    sabrina
    You're very welcome, Sabrina. :)

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