curve and turn in a road

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MyUserName

Senior Member
Portuguese
Hello,

Is it right to say that a "curve", in English, is a bend with a light degree meanwhile a "turn" is a bend with a sharper degree.

The road curves right (lightly bends to the right lightly).

The road turns right (more than lightly
bends to the right ).

Thanks.
 
  • cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    Is it right to say that a "curve", in English, is a bend with a light degree meanwhile a "turn" is a bend with a sharper degree.
    Yes. In addition, a turn requires an intersection of two or more roads, while a curve is a variation in the direction of a single road.

    The road curves right (lightly bends to the right lightly). :tick: You may also say that the road curves to the right.

    The road turns right (more than lightly
    bends to the right ). :cross: This doesn't work in AE. You would say that there is a right turn, if you are referring to a turn onto a second road. If you are talking about the same single road, you would say that it curves or veers to the right.

    Finally, and just to add confusion, if a single road has a 90º turn, you would say, "There is a right angle turn (or a ninety degree turn) in the road at mile marker seventeen (Or just after the horse farm, or whatever landmark you may wish to mention.)
     

    mrr5052

    Senior Member
    American English
    In American English I would say it's more common to use/hear the word bend than curve.

    The road bends to the right.
    The car took that bend pretty fast.
     

    MyUserName

    Senior Member
    Portuguese
    Hi,

    I'm a little bit confused.:confused:

    If the road turns abruptly to the right but this is the same single road (no intersection or second road) does it curves/veers to the right?

    If so, is it right to say the degree of the bend doesn't determine if it's a "turn" or a "curve" and what really matters is if there's more than one road or not.

    Thanks.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    In American English I would say it's more common to use/hear the word bend than curve.

    The road bends to the right.
    The car took that bend pretty fast.

    We may have uncovered a regional difference here. I've spent most of my life in New England and the Middle Atlantic states, and both bend and curve are used widely, with curves probably a little more frequent. I would hesitate to proclaim that this is true in all states.
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    Where I live, we use them both. I agree that bends are sharper than curves. There may be other differences in how we use them, but I'm not certain what they are.

    It does seem to me that what might be a curve when we are driving on it, could be a bend if it is part of a description.
    Watch out for the curve!
    The house is just past a bend in the road.
    I may be making this last part up.
     
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