I am trying to understand the difference between beware of and mind when they have the meaning of to be on one's guard. Are they always interchangeable ?
I'll try to explain what bothers me, but these are only examples and I would welcome any other examples to explain the difference between the two.
If someone said to me without further context: "mind the dog" I would understand this person is going away and wants me to look after her or his dog. But could we say indifferently :
- Beware of the dog, he bites.
- Mind the dog, he bites.
In this other instance:
- Beware of falling rocks.
- Mind the falling rocks.
I have no hesitation (perhaps because falling rocks do not need to be looked after?)
I had always seen : mind the step, and mind the gap but I have just googled beware of the step and beware of the gap and had lots of hits for both.
And I am even more puzzled because google even returned some hits with beware of your head which sounds really strange to me. Does it sound strange to English native speakers too?