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    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 449
    #1

    at the beginning vs. in the beginning

    Hello,
    yesterday I came across a website which provides some on-line exercises. I tried one and when evaluating I realized the computer had corrected at the beginning with in the beginning. Now I wonder: is there any differences between them?
    I add another question concerning the same matter. What about in the end vs. at the end?
    I think it should be
    In the end everythin was ok
    At the end of the story, they get married.

    but I'd like to have a confirmation about its usage.
    Thank you
    Last edited by Englishlanguage; 25-Jun-2007 at 11:55.


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 449
    #2

    Re: at the beginning vs. in the beginning

    Quote Originally Posted by Niall Beag View Post
    That's it exactly.

    In the end is self-contained and refers to an abstract end, whereas at the end needs to be at the end of something.

    In the beginning is pretty biblical (I can't think of anywhere I've heard it other than the book of Genesis).
    So as for the meaning in the beginning and at the beginning are the same, aren't they?

  1. engee30's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
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      • Poland
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      • England

    • Join Date: Apr 2006
    • Posts: 2,969
    #3

    Wink Re: at the beginning vs. in the beginning

    Quote Originally Posted by Englishlanguage View Post
    So as for the meaning in the beginning and at the beginning are the same, aren't they?
    Let me show you the way I was taught the four similar, but different in meaning, phrases:

    In the beginning (+ nothing else) = At first; in the first place
    In the end (+ nothing else) = Finally; at last

    In the beginning, I didn't like my previous job, but I got to like it in the end.

    At the beginning (of something) = At the point that something starts
    At the end (of something) = At the point that something finishes

    At the beginning (of the film), I was yawning, but at the end (of it) I got really interested, and my jaw dropped open!
    ___________________________
    NOTE:
    Bear in mind I'm not a teacher!


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 449
    #4

    Re: at the beginning vs. in the beginning

    Quote Originally Posted by engee30 View Post
    Let me show you the way I was taught the four similar, but different in meaning, phrases:

    In the beginning (+ nothing else) = At first; in the first place
    In the end (+ nothing else) = Finally; at last

    In the beginning, I didn't like my previous job, but I got to like it in the end.

    At the beginning (of something) = At the point that something starts
    At the end (of something) = At the point that something finishes

    At the beginning (of the film), I was yawning, but at the end (of it) I got really interested, and my jaw dropped open!
    ___________________________
    NOTE:
    Bear in mind I'm not a teacher!
    thank you
    Whether this rule is followed in common language or not, it's very easy to fix ideas

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