The verbs "bring" and "take", though common in use, can be confusing for English learners. One major reason why learners have difficulty distinguishing between the two verbs is that they have very similar meanings but their use depends on your point of reference for the action.
The verb "bring" describes movement toward where the speaker or the listener is.
- Please bring me a glass of water when you come back from the kitchen. (Movement toward the speaker)
- If you want some tea, I'll be happy to bring a cup to you (Movement toward the listener).
The verb "take", on the other hand, describes movement away from the place where the speaker or the listener is.
- It's getting late. Shall I take you home? (Movement away from the speaker)
- Take the book down to the third floor of the library. (Movement away from the listener)
Now look at these four sentences. Two of them are incorrect.
a) I will take two suitcases with me when I travel to Canada.
b) Could you bring me to the airport tomorrow?
c) When I opened my suitcase, I realized I`d forgotten to take my toothbrush.
d) I'll remember to take my dictionary with me when I go to school tomorrow.
Answers: In sentence b) the verb should be "take" because the action describes movement away from the listener. In sentence c) the verb should be "bring" because the action describes movement toward the speaker.
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