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    #1

    win him/her/Mary?

    Can the verb 'win' be followed by 'someone or some people' as object? From the books I have read, I have rarely seen the verb 'win' followed by someone or some people. In fact, I used to think it is incorrect to say 'I won him', 'I won her' or 'I won Mary'. But Dale Carnegie's book is entitled How to Win Friends & Influence People. If I am wrong, please correct me. Thank you.

  1. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: win him/her/Mary?

    Quote Originally Posted by maoyueh View Post
    Can the verb 'win' be followed by 'someone or some people' as object? From the books I have read, I have rarely seen the verb 'win' followed by someone or some people. In fact, I used to think it is incorrect to say 'I won him', 'I won her' or 'I won Mary'. But Dale Carnegie's book is entitled How to Win Friends & Influence People. If I am wrong, please correct me. Thank you.
    That title is quite old now but, yes, it's still grammatical. You can win friends with your friendly personality.
    Generally you don't win other people. But if two men are fighting over Mary, and one wins, it's possible to say that he won Mary (traditionally in the sense of going on to marry her).
    With people in general, a salesperson can certainly win new customers, a doctor can win new patients by giving a superior service, for example.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: win him/her/Mary?

    In the context of "winning friends/patients" etc, you can replace "win" with "earn" or "do something to deserve". I'm not suggesting that you do that, but the meaning is much the same. "Win" is the most natural verb to use in those contexts though.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #4

    Re: win him/her/Mary?

    Children often (incorrectly) say 'I won him' when they mean 'I beat him' (in a game).

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: win him/her/Mary?

    Quote Originally Posted by maoyueh View Post
    Can the verb 'win' be followed by 'someone or some people' as object? From the books I have read, I have rarely seen the verb 'win' followed by someone or some people. In fact, I used to think it is incorrect to say 'I won him', 'I won her' or 'I won Mary'. But Dale Carnegie's book is entitled How to Win Friends & Influence People. If I am wrong, please correct me. Thank you.
    There is also the idiom "to win someone over", meaning to gain that person's support or agreement.

    She was reluctant at first, but I won her over.

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