come up and come over

Little man

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Hello.
Could you, please, tell me the difference between these phrasal verbs. I'd like to know only one meaning - to approach; to move towards somebody/something.

1. Michael came over/up and put his arm around me.
2. An officer came over/up to him and asked him what was in his bag.
3. I looked in the mirror and saw a police car coming over/up behind us.

Can I use them interchangeably or there is a catch?
I hope for your help.
 

teechar

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Hello.
Could you, please, tell me the difference between these phrasal verbs? I'd like to know which one means [STRIKE]only one meaning -[/STRIKE] to approach; to move towards somebody/something.

1. Michael came over/up and put his arm around me.
2. An officer came over/up to him and asked him what was in his bag.
3. I looked in the mirror and saw a police car coming over/up behind us.

Can I use them interchangeably or is there [STRIKE]is[/STRIKE] a difference between them? [STRIKE]catch?[/STRIKE]

I hope [STRIKE]for your[/STRIKE] you can help.
I wouldn't use "over" in #3, so that's one difference. Also, consider using "went" instead of "came" in #2. I assume you know the difference between those.

In addition, I consider "come over" to be more friendly than "come up". For example, if you're inviting someone to your place, it can work better.

A mother might say to her child:
Go and ask little Vanessa from next door if she'd like to come over and play with you for a while.
"Come up" wouldn't work as well in that sentence.
 

Tarheel

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I don't see how there would be any difference in meaning.

In the third one, the phrase in bold is not needed. Say: "I looked in the rear-view mirror and saw a police car behind us."
 

Tarheel

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So, do you consider the two sentences below equally acceptable?

I would prefer the second one.

(When I started my first post there had, apparently, been no responses.)
 

GoesStation

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In addition, I consider "come over" to be more friendly than "come up".

Mae West sounded pretty friendly when she invited someone to come up and see her. :)
 

Raymott

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In AusE, police cars don't come over behind you. If you had a robbery at your home and called them, they might come over.
 

teechar

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If you had a robbery at your home and called them, they might come over.
I hope you don't have to plead with them. ;-)
 

GoesStation

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I hope you don't have to plead with them. ;-)
When I lived in Los Angeles, the city's police department used a very effective technique to keep the reported crime rate down: they didn't send officers when people requested them merely to report a crime. On two separate occasions I called the police to report a crime when the criminals were no longer present; both times, I called back two hours later to say I was tired of waiting and they could cancel the call.
 

Raymott

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I hope you don't have to plead with them. ;-)
They would probably routinely come over. But since I haven't been in that situation, I can't be sure.
But what I really meant was that they might "call around", they might "drop by", they might "come over", etc.
 
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