TO MEET, TO KNOW, TO GET TO KNOW – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
The verbs ‘to meet’ and ‘to know’ are often confused by foreign speakers of English. The two verbs have different meanings in English and can be confusing if used incorrectly.
We use the verb to meet when:
- we are introduced to someone for the first time. In fact we say, ‘Pleased to meet you’ when we meet new people.
- we have an arrangement to get together with people to do something.
Examples of the verb ‘to meet’ in context:
- I met my husband in New Zealand.
- I am meeting Joe this afternoon for a coffee.
- Let’s meet at the cinema.
Meet vs Meet Up and Meet With
Meet Up – This is rather informal and would typically be used to talk about arrangements to meet friends.
Example: I’m meeting up with Jane later today.
Meet With – This is more formal and is typically used in a business context.
Example: I met with the manager to discuss the project.
We use the verb, ‘to know’ when:
- a person / thing is already familiar to you.
- you are informed about something because you learnt it before or experienced it before.
Examples of the verb ‘to know’ in context:
- I’ve known him for 15 years. We met for the first time at a wedding.
- I know Jane very well. We have been friends ever since we were children.
TO GET TO KNOW
We use the verb, ‘to get to know’ when:
- to describe the process of becoming familiar with someone or something
Examples of the phrasal verb, ‘to get to know’ in context:
- I met Mark on his first day at work. We got to know each other when we worked on a project together.
- The first day in a new city is confusing but after a day or two you get to know your way around.