at the end of the gathering’ or ‘in the end’.

Discussion in 'English Only' started by brian&me, Apr 2, 2018.

  1. brian&me

    brian&me Senior Member

    Chinese - China
    Hi,everyone.

    The following is from an English textbook for junior high school students in China, co-edited by DC Canada Education Publishing and Heibei Education Press.

    Jenny’s family gathers at Grandma and Grandpa’s house on Thanksgiving Day. ... The family gathering is exciting. It is a fun and lively evening with a big meal, delicious desserts, lots of games and good conversation. At the end, they take a family photo.

    I wonder if ‘at the end’ should be ‘at the end of the gathering’ or ‘in the end’.

    Thanks a lot in advance.
     
  2. Uncle Jack

    Uncle Jack Senior Member

    Cumbria, UK
    British English
    With an event, use "at" for a point in time or distance:
    at the start
    at the end
    at the three-quarter point (usually with reference to a race)​

    "In the end" does not refer to one particular event, but to everything that went before. "In the end, Peter and Julie decided to get married".
     
  3. brian&me

    brian&me Senior Member

    Chinese - China
    Thanks, Uncle Jack.

    I wonder if ‘at the end of the gathering’ and ‘in the end’ are also OK in the OP.
     
  4. Uncle Jack

    Uncle Jack Senior Member

    Cumbria, UK
    British English
    Not really. "In the end" is used more for a conclusion resulting from what had happened before. This isn't a strict definition, but it's use here seems wrong.
     

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