jerk, shove, twitch

Razor

Member
Russian Federation/Russian
What is the clear difference among these synonyms of 'push'? Are there any default associations in the speaker's mind with these verbs?
 
  • Old Novice

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I think "jerk" is a synonym of "pull", not "push," and "twitch" just means to move suddenly, by a small amount. Only "shove" is a synonym, and it implies an aggressive push.
     

    MissFit

    Senior Member
    I don't think that jerk is a synonym of push either. To jerk something is to move it violently, and that violent movement could be a pull or a push.

    I didn't think that twitch was a synonym of push, but my dictionary may disagree. It says that twitch can be a transitive verb, but I've only ever heard it used as an intransitive verb. That is to say, I can twitch, and I can make you twitch using some stimulus, but I can't twitch you.

    I'm not sure what I would say about shove. It's a synonym of push, but I don't know what you mean by default associations.
     

    winklepicker

    Senior Member
    English (UK)
    I don't think that jerk is a synonym of push either. To jerk something is to move it violently, and that violent movement could be a pull or a push.

    I didn't think that twitch was a synonym of push, but my dictionary may disagree. It says that twitch can be a transitive verb, but I've only ever heard it used as an intransitive verb. That is to say, I can twitch, and I can make you twitch using some stimulus, but I can't twitch you.

    I'm not sure what I would say about shove. It's a synonym of push, but I don't know what you mean by default associations.
    You can twitch the rug straight though. For me:

    Twitch = pull slightly, towards the puller or to right or left, but definitely not push.
    Jerk = to pull violently (=to tug)
    Shove = push, with some force

    Default associations:

    "Twitch the curtains"
    "Jerk my arm from its socket"
    "Shove the wardrobe against the wall"
     
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