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As Eri closed the laptop, her stomach started to growl. That's right. She hadn't eaten breakfast yet. She'd been so absorbed in the video that she had completely forgotten about it. Eri stood slowly from the sofa and then, giving the laptop a final glance, went to prepare herself to go out.

I was wondering whether the went in the last sentence is redundant. I think the word prepare already implies that the person stood up and moved from its current position?

closed as off-topic by FumbleFingers, Hellion, user49727, p.s.w.g, tchrist Sep 28 '13 at 12:42

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6

No. Let's simplify the sentence a little without changing the meaning:

Eri went to prepare herself to go out.

Or alternately

Eri prepared herself to go out.

There's a slightly different action being described here. Clearly, the latter describes Eri performing the actual action of preparing - perhaps she's doing her hair, or putting on some shoes. The former only says she "went to" do that - she is not actually performing the action of "preparing herself" yet, she is only "standing from the sofa and going to" do that - perhaps she's walking to the bathroom or some such.

As an example of the implications, let's say the next sentence is "She heard a knock at the door". In the latter case, the reader would expect that Eri is finished preparing to go our, but in the former case, the knock at the door interrupted her.

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No, it's not redundant. Prepare herself to go out doesn't mean standing up: it means doing whatever it is that she feels she needs to do before she goes out. It might mean putting on a coat, brushing her hair, picking up her keys, setting the phone to answering machine ...

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The earlier answers deal with the question of 'went'. but there are a couple of other things in the sentence which are not necessarily wrong, but which as a native English speaker I would have said slightly differently. 'Eri stood slowly from the sofa', is perfectly understandable, but most English people would say 'Eri got up slowly from the sofa'. Or you could say 'stood up slowly from the sofa', but I think you need an 'up' in there. If you simply say 'stood from the sofa' it does not convey that you were previously sitting on the sofa, it could imply that you were standing a little way away from the sofa. It is not a lucid expression which supplies clarity as to what was actually happening, or had happened. Equally we do not normally 'prepare' ourselves to go out, though we might. Oddly, we 'prepare' a meal, and we 'prepare' for a meeting, but USUALLY we 'get ready' to go out. These are very fine points but do supply clues as to whether someone grew up speaking the language from birth or not. In my case whilst I speak and write French in a manner that a French listener can understand, it is clear to any French person that I am not a native speaker, not only from my accent but from my choice of constructions. These kind of expressions fall in a similar category.

  • There is nothing wrong with "prepare herself to go out". As a native speaker I find that sentence completely natural. You can prepare yourself for lots of things. Also I disagree with your assertion that a native speaker would choose "got up" over "stood". I would probably write "stood up slowly". I find the use of "get" more informal than the more precise verbs it replaces. – Mr. Shiny and New 安宇 Sep 25 '13 at 16:17
  • Yes I agree about 'stood up', either including 'slowly' or not including it. Indeed the person may have stood up quickly. But I think you could say 'she stood up from the sofa', but to say 'stood from the sofa' is clumsy and does not supply clarity in my opinion. – user52780 Sep 25 '13 at 16:40

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