Afford somebody education

Janka

Senior Member
Slovak
Hi,
Is it possible to use verb afford in this context? My student came up with this sentence: Parents send their children to school to afford them education.
Thank you.
 
  • Janka

    Senior Member
    Slovak
    Yes, I have. You can say I can't afford to send my children to school, but my student's sentence has a different meaning. He wanted to say something like People send their children to school to provide them with education.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    It's true that to afford can mean 'to be a source of' or 'give':

    The cat afforded the children an example of dexterity.
    The river affords the townspeople opportunites for fishing.

    But its use in this sense is quite particular; your example - Parents send their children to school to afford them education - is perfectly correct, to my ear. It has nothing to do with being able to buy anything, in this sense, of course.
     

    GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    Yes, I have. You can say I can't afford to send my children to school, but my student's sentence has a different meaning. He wanted to say something like People send their children to school to provide them with education.
    But when you looked at the dictionary, as you say you did, did you look at all of the definitions?

    Here, for example, is one definition of "afford" that a dictionary gives:

    to make available, give forth, or provide naturally or inevitably <the sun affords warmth to the earth> <the roof afforded a fine view>
    Doesn't that definition, found in a dictionary, give you the answer you are looking for?
     
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