General Writing and Grammar Help/Go past - get past

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Question
Dear Ted:

What do "to GO past someone/something" and "to GET past someone/something" mean?

Is there a difference between them?

If so, when should I use each of them?

Would you please give me some examples?

Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

*** I have been trying to answer your questions for several hours, but the Allexperts system was not working.  I hope to answer both questions now, before the system stops functioning again.

*****
  

What do "to GO past someone/something" and "to GET past someone/something" mean?

Is there a difference between them?

TO GO PAST -- This phrase simply means that you travel by something, either literally or figuratively.

EXAMPLES:

I go past the bakery each morning on my way to work.

Students, we are going to go past the first four chapters of our textbook and begin our lesson with the fifth chapter.

TO GET PAST -- "Getting past" connotes doing something that is either difficult or troublesome in some way.

EXAMPLES:

The mountain climbers got past the first stage of their expedition.  They hoped to get past the next stage before the snowstorm came.

I hope to get past my current problems, so that my future will be brighter.

Ted  

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Ted Nesbitt

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I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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