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    #1

    Correct preposition

    Which sentence uses the correct preposition and why?

    1) The question was not directed at me.

    2) The question was not directed to me.

    Thanks!

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    #2

    Re: Correct preposition

    Quote Originally Posted by smk View Post
    Which sentence uses the correct preposition and why?

    1) The question was not directed at me.

    2) The question was not directed to me.

    Thanks!
    ***NOT A TEACHER*** I think that maybe (MAYBE!!!) I know the difference. It will be easier to explain if I use the affirmative instead of the negative. (1) His question was directed AT me. = He did not ask me the question. He asked someone else. But he was thinking of me when he asked somebody else the question. For example: I am the only student with green hair. So he asks another student: Don't you think some hair colors are strange? He did not ask me that question, but he was thinking of me ans wanted to embarrass me, (2) directed TO = he asked me a question or (more elegantly) he asked a question of me.

  1. kfredson's Avatar

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    #3

    Re: Correct preposition

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    ***NOT A TEACHER*** I think that maybe (MAYBE!!!) I know the difference. It will be easier to explain if I use the affirmative instead of the negative. (1) His question was directed AT me. = He did not ask me the question. He asked someone else. But he was thinking of me when he asked somebody else the question. For example: I am the only student with green hair. So he asks another student: Don't you think some hair colors are strange? He did not ask me that question, but he was thinking of me ans wanted to embarrass me, (2) directed TO = he asked me a question or (more elegantly) he asked a question of me.
    That is a very good analysis. The use of "at" certainly would be used if you wanted imply something about a person or her ideas as you asked the question, whether you were speaking directly to her or to another person.

    In practice, however, they are often used interchangeably, at least in my experience.

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