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This question already has an answer here:

  1. He went fishing in the creek nearby the grocery store.

  2. He went fishing in the creek near by the grocery store.

  3. He went fishing in the creek near to the grocery store.

Could anyone please show me if there is any difference semantically?

marked as duplicate by choster, JMP, Skooba, jimm101, Davo Jun 13 '18 at 17:09

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Nearby in the sentence implies "close at hand or adjacent".

From TFD....

nearby, adj.

talking about short distances.

If something is near, near to, or close to a place or thing, it is a short distance from it.

  • I live in Reinfeld, which is near Lübeck.
  • I stood very near to them.

When near and close have this meaning, don't use them immediately in front of a noun. Instead use nearby.

  • He was taken to a nearby hospital
  • He threw the bag into some nearby bushes
  • a nearby town

He went fishing in the creek near(by) the grocery store.

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Near by is not commonly used in this sense by native speakers.


Nearby, although also an adjective, is more common as an adverb. As in:

She lives nearby.

Also, while being used as an adjective, it's uncommon to use an article after nearby. See the example sentences in oxford:

But Mr Dodsworth claimed that nearby residents had all been in the dark.

He believes that nearby shops may be using the banks to dump cardboard boxes.

And the copper giant has also adopted three primary health centres in nearby villages.

You see the pattern? The creek nearby the grocery store doesn't quite sound right.


According to oxford, near to is equivalent to near (the proposition).

preposition

(also near to) At or to a short distance away from (a place):

the car park near the sawmill

do you live near here?

[SUPERLATIVE]: the table nearest the door

The third sentence is correct.

He went fishing in the creek near to the grocery store.

But a native speaker is more likely to drop the pronoun.

He went fishing in the creek near the grocery store.

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