Grennan and Farid Ait-Mansour, a fellow volunteer, soon discovered that even though the war had ended in 2006, child trafficking was ongoing. As a result, thousands of village children were living in Kathmandu, adandoned and forgotten. Both men agreed that the best solution was to try and reunite the kids with their families.

HI,

Is it right to understand "try and reunite" in the above as "try to reunite?" Thanks.
1 2
Hi,

Yes. The form 'try and do something ' is very common in casual English.

Clive
AngliholicBoth men agreed that the best solution was to try and reunite the kids with their families.

HI, is it right to understand "try and reunite" in the above as "try to reunite?" Thanks.
I would only say "try to reunite".

"try and reunite" makes no sense at all. It's logical meaning is 'try to reunite and reunite', which again makes no sense.

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canadian45I would only say "try to reunite".
"try and reunite" makes no sense at all. It's logical meaning is 'try to reunite and reunite', which again makes no sense.
Hi,

No. It means the same as try to reunite. It's commonly used in spoken English. And it does make sense, at

least to me. Emotion: smile

Regards
Regards[quote user="canadian45"]

I would only say "try to reunite". "try and reunite" makes no sense at all. It's logical meaning is 'try to reunite and reunite', which again makes no sense.

Hi,No. It means the same as try to reunite. It's commonly used in spoken English. I have no doubt that it's commonly used and that it is meant to mean 'try to reunite'.

But whether it makes sense or not is where we differ.

"try and reunite" logically means 'first try to reunite and then reunite', and that would, in retrospect, only be true if the person in fact succeeds in reuniting. But since we obviously can't know in advance whether the person will succeed or not, only 'try to reunite' makes sense to me.

Regards
c45

canadian45"try and reunite" logically means 'first try to reunite and then reunite', and that would, in retrospect, only be true if the person in fact succeeds in reuniting. But since we obviously can't know in advance whether the person will succeed or not, only 'try to reunite' makes sense to me.
c45
Hi,

It seems to me that you're having trouble with this phrase because you're applying unjustified logic to it.

I certainly don't judge the meaning here by virtue of its ambiguity, as you described nicely.

The structure try and do something is a matter of grammar, pure and simple. It doesn't have to do with

semantics. Likewise, this structure means the same as try to do something which is widely used

in everyday speech. Unfortunately, your reasoning, then, seems to me misguided.

Regards
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Here's an interesting factoid that I discovered years ago.

Some foreign language texts for students of English teach the "try and" construction as an exception to "try to", which foreign students expect. They actually tell their students to substitute 'and' for the expected 'to' in the phrase "try ___ [verb]".

Somebody must think it's standard practice in English. Emotion: smile

CJ
Hi,

Sorry, CJ, but I can't see the point here somehow.

Regards
RegardsHi,It seems to me that you're having trouble with this phrase because you're applying unjustified logic to it. I don't know why you feel the logic is unjustified. Language is not just vocabulary, grammar and idioms. Logic and common sense in a language are virtues that make the language easier to understand and learn.

I certainly don't judge the meaning here by virtue of its ambiguity, as you described nicely. But "try and reunite" cannot justify its ambiguity by, for example, claiming 'idiom status' which it is not.

I guess the bottom line is why anyone would say or justify "try and reunite" when "try to reunite" is obviously better.

Of course when a student asks about the two phrases we should say that both are used. We can then comment further as we wish.

The structure try and do something is a matter of grammar, pure and simple. It doesn't have to do with semantics. Why shouldn't it have to do with semantics? Again, it's not an idiom. It's just inferior English, in my opinion. (no matter how common it is)

Likewise, this structure means the same as try to do something which is widely used in everyday speech. Unfortunately, your reasoning, then, seems to me misguided. That's a matter of opinion and something we disagree on.
c45

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