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Wolfie the amazing grammar dogAn Anna Grammar Page

Get into vs Go into
get into and go into, get out of and go out of

For normal use, we go into or out of a place;

She went into the room. They went out of the building.

However, if there is some sort of complication, process or difficulty, we get into or out of a place.

It's less a matter of its being difficult as not straightforward - perhaps slightly complicated, and in some cases resulting in an achievement: "What do you have to do to get into university?"

Now, you may argue that it isn't difficult or complicated to get into bed, but if you think about it, you have to pull back the blankets, get in, pull up the blankets...

One of my pupils scoffed: It's not difficult to get into or out of a car. The following day I had a godsend - an article in a magazine on how difficult it is for the British royal family to get into and out of cars GRACEFULLY - with photographs. I plonked it down in front of him, and said, "It is difficult to get into a car."

Anna Grammar

Exercise

Add get or go, using the correct tense and verb form:

  1. You'll never .............. into that club - you're not wearing a tie.
  2. After taking the family photograph in the garden, they all .............. inside for tea.
  3. Where's the post office? It's on the next corner: you .............. in on the Willow Street side.
  4. She was feeling really miserable, so she .............. into bed and stayed there for the rest of the day.
  5. The carjacker told him to .............. out of the car and to give him the keys.
  6. The kleptomaniac .............. out of the shop with a pocket full of stuff.
  7. Someone always phones when I'm in the bath, so I have to .............. out sopping wet to answer it.
  8. You'll have to write an entrance examination if you want to .............. into university.
  9. That lady who's going to feed the cat while we're away - how is she going to .............. into the house?
  10. They .............. into the lift on the ground floor, and .............. out on the first floor.


Key

1.get; 2.went; 3.go; 4.got; 5.get; 6.went; 7.get; 8.get; 9.get; 10.went/got went/got.

(We seem to be a bit doubtful about lifts. Usually they're uncomplicated but on occasion the door starts closing on the user, threatening to cut him/her in half!)


Ask Anna Grammar

Contact Anna Grammar at grammar@english-to-go.com

Dear Ms Grammar,

What's going on with the prefix "in-"? I add it to expensive to produce the opposite, inexpensive, but when I do the same with valuable, I end up with invaluable!

Geordie Burton
Washington

Dear Geordie,

This is because "in-" can have an intensive or causative function: inflammable; inflame; incendiary; infuriate; ingenious.

Anna Grammar


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