1

I think most native speakers have an implicit understanding of the difference between 'Here you go' and 'There you go', although the difference in use between these expressions is small. I'm not a native speaker though I also have some understanding of the difference but I'd still like to formalize the (difference in) meaning.

In my understanding 'Here you go' would be used more often when you're actually handing someone a physical object, while 'There you go' is a little more abstract, like someone reaching a conclusion. But it can be used for something further away as well.

However, the expressions can be used interchangeably somewhat. But in what cases would you do that? For example, is there ever a reason to make you choose 'There you go' when handing somebody something?

Bonus points for references to 'Here you are/There you are' and why the linguistically similar 'Here we go/There we go' means something completely different. Perhaps there is a common origin?

  • Of course, "There you go!" is used as a sort of exclamation meaning "See what I mean?" or something to that effect. There's no equivalent use with "here you go". But "Here you go!" is sometimes used to mean roughly "Aha!", with no equivalent for "there you go". – Hot Licks Jan 18 '16 at 2:44
  • As to when the expressions are used while, eg, handling the object of discussion, "Here you go" would be used while handing the object to your interrogator, while "There you go" would be used if you pointed it out to him across the room. – Hot Licks Jan 18 '16 at 2:47
  • VERY big question - both phrases used so often is so many literal and figurative ways youtube.com/watch?v=Wi9y5-Vo61w – Dan Jan 18 '16 at 14:03
  • Just to follow up on Hot Licks's observations above, "There you go" can also be used as part of a congratulatory expression. In a children's computer game called Zoombinis—which I spent a lot of time with about 17 years ago—a (cartoon) Cajun boatman expresses his approval of the player's ordering of the zoombinis in his skiff by saying, among other things, "There you go—you got it!" That colloquial phrasing sounds very natural to me. – Sven Yargs Jan 19 '16 at 21:27
  • ... And of course "There you go again, Mr. President" may have helped catapult Ronald Reagan into the White House because it expressed just the right tone of tolerant, respectful, slightly amused disappointment in President Carter's criticism of Reagan during a televised debate, enabling prospective voters who were leery of Reagan's policy positions to focus instead on his folksy charm. – Sven Yargs Jan 19 '16 at 21:37
-2

As far as I remember, "Here you ARE" corresponds to "There you GO" when passing objects, say, over the table on smb's request.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.