Due to circumstances beyond our control

Discussion in 'English Only' started by jesusguime, Oct 16, 2008.

  1. jesusguime Senior Member

    Chinese
    Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to open the amusement park today.
    Due to some uncontrolable situations, ...

    Hi,
    Do both of the above sound equally good? Thanks.
     
  2. Pidginboy Senior Member

    India-Local dialect
    "Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to open the amusement park today." is correct, but not the second one.
     
  3. Elwintee Senior Member

    London England
    England English
    The first is best. 'Uncontrollable situations' makes one think that a major fight might be going on!
    Incidentally, strictly speaking in your context you should write 'owing to...' instead of 'due to'. According to my Chambers English Dictionary, 'due to' means 'caused by', as in: "the fire was due to a lightning strike". 'Owing to' means the same as 'because of'. Not many people follow this rule, though.
     
  4. jesusguime Senior Member

    Chinese
    Thanks, Pidginboy and Elwintee.
    But I still have problems telling situations and circumstances apart.
     
  5. Elwintee Senior Member

    London England
    England English
    I don't wonder, they are confusing. It might help to consider the etymology of the words. A circumstance [Latin circum = around, stans = standing] is 'the surroundings of an action/person', and these can have a long-term aspect: "His circumstances were dire: no money, no job, divorce looming". A situation [Latin situatus = place] is more of a one-off thing (the place you are in, how things are here and now), and usually short-lived: "Please give me a situation report on whether the buses are running today".
    I don't think I've done a good job - perhaps others will give a better explanation!
     

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