Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between “Across” and “Through”

“Across” vs “Through”

“Across” and “through” are two words that serve as prepositions. As prepositions, they indicate direction, position, and movement of an object from one place to another. The movement is usually linear, either side by side, front to back, or vice versa. Both terms can also function as adverbs in certain situations.

“Across” is used to describe movement on or over a certain surface. It is used in a two-dimensional or open space.  “Across” infers a transverse movement which only includes the exterior or outside space. The word can also refer to the new direction or position after the crossing.

As a word, “across” is also used to indicate a direction from one side to the other in a crossword puzzle.

The word “across” was used beginning in circa 1300. It was derived from an Anglo-French word meaning “a crossed position” or “on cross.” It was first used as a preposition with its modern meaning in 1590, and a new meaning “on the other side” was made in the 1750s.

On the other hand, “through” is a word used to describe movement in three-dimensional space. In addition, it indicates the entrance of an object into a direction or doing an action in a covered space. “Through” also offers a sense of depth when it used as a description for inward movement. It is also used to indicate a surrounding environment. The word also implies that there is a use of means or agents to complete or accomplish something.

In other uses and context, the word “through” is used as an adjective. In this context, it indicates completion. It does not have any degree of comparison as an adjective. As an adverb, it can be a base comparative or superlative form. This is possible with the addition of the word “further” in front of “through.”

“Through” is also a popular idiom as “through and though.” The idiom refers to “beginning to end content.” In some contexts, there is also a difference where the emphasis is placed. When using “across,” the emphasis is on the object. On the other hand, “through” gives importance to the recipient of the object.

The origin of the word “through” can be traced back from a variety of Old World languages like Old English, Old High German, Old Saxon, Latin, and Welsh. It is hard to pinpoint the exact root word. However, the modern word “through” was first used in 1300.

1. The words “across” and “through” infer direction and position. They also function as prepositions and adverbs in language usage. “Through” can also be used as an adjective and part of an idiom in some contexts.
2. One main difference in the proper usage of both terms is the nature of the space. In using “across,” the object is placed in a two-dimensional or open space. On the other hand, “through” expresses motion in a three-dimensional or closed space.
3. “Across” indicates a transverse direction while “through” includes depth in its context.
4. “Through” is also used as an adjective. In everyday use, it is a description that marks or signals a completion or an end. “Through,” as an adjective, does not have any morphological forms, but as an adverb it can undergo changes both in the comparative and superlative forms with the addition of the word “further.”
5.  In some contexts, “through” is also used when agents or tools to accomplish something are used.
6. Both “across” and “through” were first used in the 1300s. The origin of “across” is more defined compared to the etymology of the word “through.” “Across” came from an Anglo-French word while “through” has numerous language origins, mostly Old World languages.

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