[Ads-l] _try to_ vs. _try and_

Robin Hamilton robin.hamilton3 at VIRGINMEDIA.COM
Tue Nov 8 02:41:43 EST 2016


I ran an Ngram on this:

1800 -- "try to" slightly preferred.

1880 -- "try to" has been rising faster than "try and", while at and after this
point, the "and" line flattens out.

2000 -- Ratio:  "try to" 56 :: "try and" 4.

Caveats -- the usual with regard to Ngram, with the added point that (I suspect)
spoken rather than written use might show a different pattern.

Is there a spoken corpus linguist in the house?

Robin

> 
>     On 08 November 2016 at 06:51 Robin Hamilton
> <robin.hamilton3 at VIRGINMEDIA.COM> wrote:
> 
> 
>     I think I might have been, since I'd see "try to" as more formal than "try
>     and".
> 
>     At the very least -- I suspect that there is a slight but definite
> difference in
>     meaning between the two phrases. Or maybe they only occur in specifically
>     distinct registers?
> 
>     Anyone got any pointers to where there might be a discussion of the
> differences
>     between the two? I could google, I suppose but ...
> 
>     Right, forget that! Aren't books wonderful? I reached across to my
>     grammarshelf, and lo, in Merriam-Webster, under “try and”, 2 3/4 pages of
>     detailed (I presume) unfolding of the issue, that would probably address
>     Wilson's question.
> 
>     Now to see whether M-W concurs with what I said originally.
> 
>     Robin
> 
>     >
>     > On 08 November 2016 at 04:26 Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
>     >
>     >
>     > Was anyone else specifically taught that _try to_ is "correct," whereas
>     > _try and_ is "incorrect"? It was like, you know, on the final.
>     >
>     > --
>     > -Wilson
>     > -----
>     > All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint to
>     > come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
>     > -Mark Twain
>     >
>     > ------------------------------------------------------------
>     > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>     >
> 
>     ------------------------------------------------------------
>     The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>

------------------------------------------------------------
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