to clarify / to clear up

  • Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Hello, FS Markos - welcome to the forums:)

    I think there are several differences between "clarify" and "clear up" - not least that you can use "clear up" about physical things.

    Can you give us a context - and in particular a sentence - in which you'd like to use either "clarify" or "clear up"?
     

    FS Markos

    New Member
    Spanish
    Thanks for your kindness Loob :)
    I'm sorry. I forgot to explain this, thanks for remembering me this. I would like to know the differences between these two verbs, when clear up means "to clarify doubts". Do you know what I mean ?
    For example: "Could you clarify this doubt for me, please?" or "Could you clear up this doubt for me, please?"
    Which one of these are right, if I have written any right, of course.
    Thanks you again ^^
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    Hi again FS Markos

    I think your question is actually a bit more complicated than it appears to be....

    The 'simple' answer is that we're more likely to say, I think, "clear up a doubt", rather than "clarify a doubt".

    The more complicated answer is that we don't use the word "doubt" in exactly the same way that the equivalent word is used in Spanish: we often prefer "question". So we don't say, for example, "I have a doubt"; we're more likely to say "I have a question".

    So what I'd normally expect is "Could you clear up a question for me?" or "Could you resolve a question for me?" or "Could you answer a question for me?"
     

    FS Markos

    New Member
    Spanish
    Hi again Loob !
    Oh, thanks you very much. So, the main difference is that is more frequently use "clear up" with doubts and questions. A friend of mine told me that "clear up" is for missunderstanding or something like that, but when he explain the difference between these two verbs, it doesn't make senses, but now, I got it. So, my question has been cleared up :)
    And so, when do you use the word "doubt"? If it doesn't mean the same, what means actually ?

    You cleared up my question very well. It's clarified now ^^
     
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