Grammar is the way we arrange words to form a sentence. Nouns, verbs, pronouns, determiners, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, and conjunctions are recognized as parts of speech.
Several words have different meanings but are used in place of one another in general language due to incorrect or lack of proper knowledge among people.
Likewise, there are various confusing words, for example, accept and accept. The former means to approve or consent to receive or give, whereas the latter denotes the meaning of excluding something or other.
Another example of the same would be already, and already, some may say that the only difference between them is the space between two particles.
However, there is more to it; the former denotes that everything or everyone is ready, whereas the latter, i.e., already means by now or till now.
By and near are words with two different meanings; the former by is used for a close place, for example, That place is by the sea, whereas the latter is used to indicate the actual place by giving a reference to a second thing or place, for example, My home is near Gate number seven.
- “By” is a preposition to indicate proximity or adjacency, while “near” is a preposition or adverb to denote closeness in distance or time.
- “By” can suggest a location immediately adjacent to or touching another location, whereas “near” implies a location that is relatively close but not necessarily touching.
- Both “by” and “near” are used to convey proximity but have slightly different implications: “by” suggests more immediate or direct proximity. In contrast, “near” implies a somewhat looser or more general closeness.
By vs. Near
“By” is a preposition that is used to indicate a sense of proximity next to, through, or near something or someone, and is used to indicate something that is used as a means to an end. “Near” is also a preposition that is used to indicate a sense of proximity or closeness to something or someone.
|Parameter of Comparison||By||Near|
|Meaning||The word “by” suggests the closeness of the place or the thing.||On the other hand, the word “near” denotes the short distance between a place to a real place.|
|Examples||For example, The restaurant is by the beach|
I spoke to her by telephone
|For example, The AZY hotel is near the Qutub Minar|
My school is near the ABC Cinema.
|Alternative words||The alternatives for the word “by” are next to, beside, next door to, alongside, close to, before, and hard by.||The alternative words for “near” are close, near, at hand, within reach, almost, and nearly.|
|Part of speech||The word “by” is also commonly used as a preposition, adjective, and adverb.||Similarly, the word “near” is also used as a preposition, adjective, and adverb.|
|Distance||By denotes that the place or thing is just beside it.||Whereas on the other hand, near is used to denote that it is not beside but within a close distance,|
When to Use By?
By is the word that denotes the closeness or immediacy of the place. Depending on the sentence, it is used as a preposition and adverb. A preposition is a function phrase that is commonly combined with a noun.
There are many ways of using by as a preposition; a few are mentioned below.
The list starts with:
- ‘By’ and place: The word “by” is used with a place, where it denotes the closeness of the place. For example, The Shake it up cafe is by the river, and Riza lives by the train station.
- ‘By’ and method of transportation: When we use the mode of transport, we denote the meaning of how a person or persons are traveling. For example, John travels to work by car or the people of the committee travel by bus.
- ‘By’ and the method of communication: By + touch refers to the procedure or communication method. For example, I will send you the invoice by post or speak to her by telephone.
- ‘By’ and the payment method: By plus, the method of payment is the technique or system used for payment. For example, I shop with my credit card or get my salary by cheque.
When to Use Near?
The word near represents a short distance, like 2 kilometers or so, in terms of place. It can be used as a preposition, adverb, and adverb. It can be used in the following situations or sentences.
- Close to something: The group of policemen was sitting near the entrance
- Getting close to a situation: Julie is near to solving a puzzle
- Similarity: His words are near the truth but not accurate
- A little less than a particular amount or number: The temperature was near 50 degrees
Main Differences Between By and Near
- The first and foremost difference in propositions is that by and near is in its meaning; the former refers to immediacy, whereas the latter refers to the short distance.
- The difference between them in adverbs is that by is along the speaker’s path, while near has a small intervening distance concerning something.
- In adjectives, by denotes out of the way/standard path; however, near refers to being physically close.
- By and near cannot be used interchangeably; for example, I am waiting for you by the car and standing near the tree. By denotes a shorter distance than near does.
- For example, I live by the lake, here the word by is used to denote that the lake is visible from the place where the speaker lives and is just beside the lake, whereas, if we put the word near in the sentence, i.e., I live near the lake, here it will denote that the speaker within a couple of kilometers or more, of the sea.
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Emma Smith holds an MA degree in English from Irvine Valley College. She has been a Journalist since 2002, writing articles on the English language, Sports, and Law. Read more about me on her bio page.