I would like to know if a construction that I've read few times is indeed correct. When referring to a number of items, is it correct to say "The item numbers ranged from 4 through 7"? Is it better to say ""The item numbers ranged from 4 to 7"?

Moreover, if both sentences were correct, any hint about their usage?

  • 2
    The first one is better since it unambiguously tells the reader that 4 and 7 are both included.
    – mplungjan
    Jul 30, 2014 at 8:49
  • 2
    to = end not necessarily inclusive; through = both inclusive. Some writers avoid to in such contexts altogether to avoid ambiguity. HTH.
    – Kris
    Jul 30, 2014 at 9:04
  • use "2 up to and including 9" or if it's really important, say "from 11 to 14 inclusive" and if it is life-critical you say "from 11 to 14 inclusive of the 11 and 14"
    – Fattie
    Jul 30, 2014 at 15:18

2 Answers 2


I'd personally prefer the former, as the two commenter up there explained, however the dictionary has a clear definition and explanation for this which is suggesting that the later is the correct form. See the check-marked line from part b:

range2 (v.)

1 include [intransitive always + adverb/preposition]

    a) to include a variety of different things or people in addition to those mentioned range:

      from something to something

      The show had a massive audience, ranging from children to grandparents.

    b) if prices, levels, temperatures, etc. range from one amount to another, they include both those amounts and anything in between:

      range from something to something ✓

      There were 120 students whose ages ranged from 10 to 18.
      range between something and something

      The population of these cities ranges between 3 and 5 million.
      range in age/size/price etc

      The shoes range in price from $25 to $100.


Maybe old-fashioned, but I would still consider through as AmE, but not BrE.

In the example given, since it is an integral quantity we are talking about, it is clear that both ends of the range are included.

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