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Will it mean the same if I say:

I tied the knot with her.

and

I tied the knot to her.

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Questions about common idioms may find warmer reception on ELL, which is specifically intended for use by people in the earlier stages of English learning. –  Tyler James Young Aug 14 '13 at 15:57

3 Answers 3

Both your examples are identical, but judging by the title, I assume you meant "I tied the knot with her" vs. "I tied the knot to her". Is that correct?

If so, they are certainly not identical. The first is a figurative usage, an idiom ("to tie the knot") meaning to get married. In this case, you're marrying her.

The second usage isn't idiomatic, but rather should be interpreted directly - you took a piece of rope or string, and tied it in a knot around her. While this might also be a part of the marital relations, it's not a part of the idiom.

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Thank you so much!it's more clear now.And yes it was "tied the knot TO her ". –  user45373 Aug 14 '13 at 14:35

It won't mean the same.
When you say that you tie something to something else, it means you are placing those two things together (tied by something).
Example:

1) I tied the dog to the post. (The dog and the post have been placed together; as in, we can see that the dog cannot move away from the post.)
2) I tied the boat to the tree.

Hence, in your context of marriage, only with her is applicable here.

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Thank you for this helpful information –  user45373 Aug 14 '13 at 14:41

No, they won't mean the same thing.

I tied the knot with her.

This means that we tied the knot together, perhaps as a collaborative effort or both being witness to the same knot-tying activity. Most importantly, it is slang for "I married her" or "We got married".

I tied the knot to her.

This means that I used something, perhaps a rope, to tie a particular knot, on the same piece of rope, to her. It implies that she was passive in the act, so she might not have been conscious of, compliant in, or an accomplice in the knot-tying activity itself. It does not have the same slang meaning either.

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