A preposition question

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Selene
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A preposition question

Post by Selene » Wed Feb 16, 2005 4:46 pm

Does anyone know the difference between : to peek on and to peek at( if there is any).
For ex: I am peeking on my friend .
I am peeking at my friend.
English prepositions make no sense,don't you think?
thanks a lot

shokin
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Post by shokin » Wed Feb 16, 2005 5:32 pm

Heu... I didn't know these verbs. What do they mean ?

the phrasal verbs are one of my difficulties (vocabulary as usually).

Shokin
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Selene
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Post by Selene » Wed Feb 16, 2005 7:14 pm

It means to spy.thanks for your interest

shokin
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Post by shokin » Thu Feb 17, 2005 1:06 am

in my dictionnary I read :

to spy on

to peek at

Shokin
Nous sommes libres. Wir sind frei. We are free. Somos libres. Siamo liberi.

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Chet Baker
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Post by Chet Baker » Mon Mar 14, 2005 4:07 am

I hope that you may find the following information useful. If there is anything wrong with my explanation, please kindly let me have your comment.

According to Oxford English and Chinese dictionary, the usage and its preposition between “PEEK” and “SPY” are different. In respect of “PEEK”, the object can only be used to refer things, such as someone’s daily, letter and it is followed by “AT”. Further, it shall not be used to “person”. For example, I peek at his newspaper.

In respect of “SPY”, it can be used to refer both person and things. If the object is somebody, the verb shall be followed by “ON”, for example, he spies on his girlfriend. If it refers to something, “ON/INTO” will be followed. For example, he spies on/into his boss’s secrets.

Therefore, your example “I am peeking on my friend” is incorrect. It should be “I spy on the girl sitting over there” or “I peek at my friend’s homework”.

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Chet Baker
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Post by Chet Baker » Mon Mar 14, 2005 4:25 am

By the way, “Peek” also refers to a quick action; it usually means than an action is done without planning and its’ duration is very shot. On the other hand, “SPY” may imply that the action is comparatively longer than “PEEK”.

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