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Prepositions To and At

Average: 3.8 (19 votes)

Take a look at the two sentences. They are similar; yet, they have different meanings. What is the difference?

'Throw it to him.'
'Throw it at him.'

As you can see the prepositions in each sentence are different. Here's how the prepositions change the meaning:

Throw it to him

This sentence means 'give it to him'. You throw it so that 'he' can catch it.

Throw it at him

In this sentence we are trying to hit 'him' - we are not interested in him catching it.

Let's use the same forms in another couple of examples:

'Throw my cell phone to me - don't worry I won't drop it!'

'Throw that pen at Simon - I'll give you a dollar if you hit him!'

Link: Mixed Prepositions quiz

  • In darts you have to throw the dart ___ the board.

  • You can just throw the keys ___ me - it will be quicker.

  • The teacher was angry when his students threw snowballs ___ him.

  • The clown threw a pie ___ the man in the crowd. It hit him in the face!

  • Don't throw it ___ me - I'm scared that I'll drop it.