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  1. Newbie
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    #1

    Question english verbs that imply an idea of movement

    Hello to all the readers and helpers,
    I always wonder why when using a verb that implies a movement, you would have to add a preposition. For example why say "it plummets down" rather than just "it plummets"?
    Same for "to fall down" and "to fall"... If you fall you are bound to go down, aren't you?

    Thanks for enlighting me.
    Nallie
    Last edited by nallie; 26-Feb-2017 at 19:45. Reason: Required from Mr Moderator...

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: english verbs that imply an idea of movement

    Welcome to the forum.

    Before we answer your question, please edit your post so that it follows these rules of written English:

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    #3

    Re: english verbs that imply an idea of movement

    Plummet doesn't necessarily require a preposition. Stock markets, for example, sometimes plummet unassisted by that part of speech.

    However, English is full of phrasal verbs like fall down whose meaning depends on the preposition. I'm sure linguists have many theories to explain the phenomenon; the learner just has to accept it and memorize these beasts, just as people learning French have to memorize which verbs take and which take de.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #4

    Re: english verbs that imply an idea of movement

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    Plummet doesn't necessarily require a preposition. Stock markets, for example, sometimes plummet unassisted by that part of speech.

    However, English is full of phrasal verbs like fall down whose meaning depends on the preposition. I'm sure linguists have many theories to explain the phenomenon; the learner just has to accept it and memorize these beasts, just as people learning French have to memorize which verbs take and which take de.
    Thank you for your reply GoesStation.
    I know there are many phrasal verbs in English with a particuliar meaning. But the example of "plummet" stricked me because, I knew we could use it without "down". I read it in a text and wondered why adding the "down" in this case. I couldn't find in dictionnaries a different mean between "plummet" and "plummet down".
    Would it be a way to insist on the fall itself maybe?

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    #5

    Re: english verbs that imply an idea of movement

    Actually plummet down is not a phrasal verb. It's just a verb followed by a preposition: he plummeted down the hill. If we could say "he plummeted the hill", it would sound like he was doing something to the hill; "the hill" would sound like a direct object.

    Insist and the French verb "insister" are false cognates. Write Would it maybe be a way to emphasize the fall itself?
    I am not a teacher.

  6. Skrej's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: english verbs that imply an idea of movement

    One reason we can use 'plummet' without a preposition is because things can only plummet in one direction - downward. By definition 'plummet' indicates a rapid downward movement, so 'down' is actually redundant, unless as in GoesStation's example, it's necessary to avoid ambiguity.
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