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I'm a little bit confused over the difference between the following sentences.

I went home. I went to home.

Could someone please explain the difference.

marked as duplicate by Matt E. Эллен Mar 16 '15 at 10:47

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  • 1
    The second one is ungrammatical. – tchrist Apr 19 '13 at 4:26
  • Why is it ungrammatical ? if I went to park, I went to school are correct, why isn't I went to home correct too ? – Prasad Weera Apr 19 '13 at 4:32
  • 2
    "I went to park" isn't grammatical, unless you mean "I went to park the car" – simchona Apr 19 '13 at 4:40
  • @PrasadWeera: It is idiom. Normally, use to + article. The words home and school are idiomatic exceptions (there are more). – Cerberus Apr 19 '13 at 5:12
  • And there are different usages: I went to school (ie was part of the school community / went that day to study) vs I went to the school (perhaps to see if the reports about it being an Art Deco masterpiece were true). UK usage is I went to hospital (ie was an inpatient) but I went to the infirmary (either usage). – Edwin Ashworth Apr 19 '13 at 8:22

The peculiar usage of home without the preposition 'to' is explained by 'paco' at http://www.englishforums.com/English/AdverbialObjectives/bvwmv/post.htm :

Many English nouns and noun phrases can be used as adverbs. They are called "adverbial objectives". From the standpoint of word order, an adverbial objective is put as if it were an objective of a verb, but actually it works as an adverbial modifier of the verb. This sort of construct comes from an Old English grammar rule that allowed the use accusative cases of nouns as adverbs. For example, let's take an Old English sentence "He eode ham"[=He went home]. From the view of current English the word "ham" [home] would be treated as an adverb but it was the accusative of the noun "ham" in Old English [corresponding to 'to {his} home' rather than just '{his} home' in present-day English}: ie the to is considered to be 'built into' the home where required; this is possibly the only word this occurs with nowadays].

Other directional adverbial objectives / other adverbials not taking 'to' (there aren't many) include:

He's gone some place. (colloquial)

He's gone somewhere.

When did you come here?

When will you go there?

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