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  1. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #1

    to orient somebody in a city

    Here's a situation for students to make up a dialogue in class.

    A stranger comes up to you in the street asking to orient him. (He needs to get to the airport but seems to have lost his way.) Give him/her detailed directions.

    Does the expression to orient somebody (in the city) sound natural in the above context? I used the following definition when making the situation:orient - Definition from Longman English Dictionary Online
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: to orient somebody in a city

    Quote Originally Posted by englishhobby View Post
    Here's a situation for students to make up a dialogue in class.

    A stranger comes up to you in the street asking to orient him. (He needs to get to the airport but seems to have lost his way.) Give him/her detailed directions.

    Does the expression to orient somebody (in the city) sound natural in the above context? I used the following definition when making the situation:orient - Definition from Longman English Dictionary Online
    No, it's not natural, use "direct".

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: to orient somebody in a city

    No. That sounds very strange to me. I would say something like "A stranger comes up to you in the street asking for directions to the airport" or "A stranger comes up to you in the street and asks you to help him to get to the airport".
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #4

    Re: to orient somebody in a city

    It's not natural. You don't really hear "orient" used as a verb often. I would say that somebody was looking for directions.

    We do speak of "orientation" but that would be for a person new to a company or school, etc.

  4. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: to orient somebody in a city

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    No, it's not natural, use "direct".
    And when we speak about ourselves, is orient oneself also not to be used? Is the following example from the dictionary old-fashioned:

    She looked at the street names, trying to orient herself.
    ?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  5. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: to orient somebody in a city

    Quote Originally Posted by englishhobby View Post
    And when we speak about ourselves, is orient oneself also not to be used? Is the following example from the dictionary old-fashioned:

    She looked at the street names, trying to orient herself.
    ?
    That is fine but "orienting yourself" means "to try to work out where you are right now". It doesn't mean "to get directions to another place".
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: to orient somebody in a city

    I'd use "orientate myself". But I'm aware that others wouldn't, and I don't want to start an argument.
    For an argument, see here:
    etymology - "Oriented" vs. "orientated" - English Language & Usage Stack Exchange

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