Consider the following:

She drew the curtains.

What does drew mean here? Does it mean that she closed or opened the curtains? According to American English Thesaurus, draw could imply both open and close.

 4. she drew the curtains: close, shut, lower; open, part, pull back, pull open, fling open, raise.

If it implies close, what will be the opposite of drew? I am looking for something better than open.

  • Noah, your question reminds me of this one (not a duplicate, but you might find that interesting reading nonetheless). To answer your question, the opposite of drew would be drew, but you'd simply provide context: i.e., "She drew the curtains open," or "She drew the curtains shut" (unless it's Amelia Bedelia, who simply drew the curtains). – J.R. Aug 2 '12 at 9:20
  • In Hindi, the word kal means both "tomorrow" and "yesterday" :) – notablytipsy Aug 2 '12 at 9:26
  • Perhaps she's an artist? – ᴇʟᴇvᴀтᴇ Aug 2 '12 at 9:53
  • @aetheria: No, she's more of a literalist. – J.R. Aug 2 '12 at 10:00

Yes, it implies "open" or "close". Draw simply means pull (the same as "draw water from a well").

Whether it's opening or closing in the case of curtains can only be inferred from context.

  • That example comes straight from the dictionary. – Noah Aug 2 '12 at 9:37
  • And it's a perfectly correct use of the word. The "close, shut, lower; open, part, pull back, pull open, fling open, raise" indicates that drew could mean all of those things, and which applies can only be gleaned from context. – Andrew Leach Aug 2 '12 at 9:41
  • And apparently I clicked that little tick. – Noah Aug 2 '12 at 9:57

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