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I wonder how or why it is possible to use the verb "range" with the preposition "from" but without "to". This is one of the examples that I have encountered:

this ranges from the basis on which funds are provided to the real sector, the ways in which the ownership of equity by financial corporations impacts on the behavior of non-financial corporations and the degree to which non-financial corporations themselves engage in financial operations.

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    It's obviously possible, since you've found someone who wrote it. But that sentence is very poorly written. Don't copy it. You haven't even reproduced the entire sentence above. in full, it's... Commented Apr 13 at 18:05
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    ...It's English, Jim. But not as we know it. Commented Apr 13 at 18:07
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    The why is simply because in such a clunky tortuous "sentence" (which already uses the word to three times) we probably wouldn't notice an extra instance of that word anyway. And the writer himself probably forgot where he was going with that text. Commented Apr 13 at 18:11
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    Basically, they misused the phrase "ranges from", since what they're referring to is a list of things, not a continuum with a start and end.
    – Barmar
    Commented Apr 13 at 18:13
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    Intransitive 'range' may use 'over' / 'across', but (except perhaps in rare examples like 'ranged far and wide from Britain') with 'from' needs 'to' and with 'between' needs 'and'. Commented Apr 13 at 18:21

2 Answers 2

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It's possible with certain meanings of range.

From Merriam-Webster,

1 a : to roam at large or freely

b : to move over an area so as to explore it

as in

In contrast to the Little Swift it is not gregarious but occurs in scattered pairs; these are tied to nesting sites from which they range widely during the day but return to roost at night. (Waterberg)

or

5 : to change or differ within limits

as in

His music features the asymmetric rhythms and modal harmonies typical of his homeland but, like Béla Bartók, Ourkouzounov (pronounced Oor-koo-ZOO-nov) uses regional traditions as a point of departure from which he ranges widely in an intuitive and personal way. (NYC Classical Guitar Society)

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  • I don't think either of these definitions corresponds to the way the word is used in the given text. It's using the definition corresponding to "range from X to Y", except it's "range from X, Y, and Z"
    – Barmar
    Commented Apr 15 at 15:42
  • Thank you so much for all the comments—especially @DW256. I stated in my question that this is one of the examples that I encountered. The other one was from Collins dictionary: to extend, run, or go in a certain direction a boundary ranging from east and west. But I had (and still has :) some difficulty comprehending the usage. Commented Apr 17 at 18:00
  • Also << range [verb] [intransitive] to stretch out or extend in a line, as things: shabby houses ranged along the road. [Dictionary.com] >> Thus 'small settlements ranged along the highway from less than a mile outside the city limits'. Commented May 15 at 15:28
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What you're quoting is poorly written.

this springs from the basis on which funds are provided to the real sector...

...is closer to what the author should have written. If you begin a phrase with "...ranges from" you most likely need a "to" in there, too.

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  • Or 'results'. It's one possibility. But OP asks about the behaviour of the highly polysemous verb 'range'. Commented May 15 at 15:31
  • "Results from the basis..." Nah.
    – digimunk
    Commented May 16 at 14:13

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