Peer vs Peek at

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sambistapt

Senior Member
Brazilian Portuguese
Hello amigos!:)

The mayor peered/peeked at the guests during the Town ball.

Do such verbs imply the same idea in the context? Could anyone point me out the difference in case it exists?

Thanks,

Sam:cool:
 
  • bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    To me, "peek" implies that he is at least partially hidden from the guests, behind a curtain or beyond a doorway. One can "peer" at people who are right in front of them, which would mean staring at them intently or in a manner betraying intrigue or curiosity.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    I agree. Also, to me, "peer" involves a period of time. "He quickly peered at the guests" sounds very odd, if not oxymoronic.

    A peek, on the other hand, can be very brief; in fact, I think it's usually very brief. It sounds odd to me to say, "He took a long, slow peek at the guests". :)
     
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