Number one for English language teachers

Your English: Collocations: bring

Type: Article

Tim Bowen brings a smile to our faces with his article on the verb bring and its collocates.

The verb bring can be used meaning ‘to be the cause of a state, situation or feeling’. In this sense, it is possible to bring peace, as in ‘The agreement forms part of our efforts to bring peace to the region’; to bring chaos or bring disruption, as in ‘Heavy snowfalls brought chaos to parts of northern England this morning’ or ‘The strike has brought disruption to postal services throughout the capital’; to bring relief, as in ‘Unfortunately, the storm failed to bring any relief from the searing heat’; to bring comfort, as in ‘The guilty verdict has brought some comfort to the relatives of the murdered couple’; and to bring change(s), as in ‘Increased investment has brought major changes to the city centre’.

Bring can also be used in the sense of ‘to start a legal case against someone’. One can bring a case, as in ‘The case was brought by the European Commission after the government failed to meet its environmental targets’; bring an action, a prosecution or a claim, as in ‘After the collapse of the trial, the victim's family are planning to bring a private prosecution against their father's alleged murderer'; and bring charges, as in 'The police are expected to bring charges against several people arrested at the demonstration’.

Finally, if something cheers you up or makes you smile, you can say that it brings a smile to your face, while if something makes you cry or feel as if you are going to cry, you can say that it brings tears to your eyes.

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