Is "close proximity" proper grammar?
Is "close proximity" grammatically correct? Thanks.
- Anonymous6 years agoFavorite Answer
You do quite often see claims that it's a tautology, because "proximity" implies "close" - but this isn't so. "Close" is an emphasiser; "in close proximity" is closer than "in proximity" alone.
38.4 million hits in published books https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=%22in+close+prox... show it to be a very normal usage.
The expression is even used in the example sentence for the Oxford Dictionaries online entry for proximity: "do not operate microphones in close proximity to television sets" ( http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/engli... ). That's how mainstream it is.
See also the English Language & Usage StackExchange forum on the matter: Is “close proximity” a tautology? ( http://english.stackexchange.com/questions/38678/i... ). One of the answers there, interestingly, notes the statistics for print use: a third of all occurrences of "proximity" in print use over the past century appear in the expression "close proximity". It's clearly a normal idiom, and arguments how it *ought* not to be are coming from a stance of not 'getting' how language works.
There are strong arguments from linguists that redundancy (which is a common feature of idiom) has a function. See Sentence First (Omit needless criticisms of redundancy http://stancarey.wordpress.com/2011/01/04/omit-nee... ), Motivated Grammar (The reason why there’s nothing wrong http://motivatedgrammar.wordpress.com/2011/11/17/t... ) and Language Log (The squad squad keeps on keepin' on http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=1968 ) - alll written by linguists.Source(s): Native UK English speaker, technical writer
- busterwasmycatLv 76 years ago
definitely redundant. proximity means close, in the area of. Being in the proximity is the same as being close for most purposes. Some might argue that proximity does not imply the same level of "nearness" that close does.
- 6 years ago
It needs a preposition, like "in", as in "in close proximity". "John was in close proximity to Mary."
- NelsonLv 76 years ago
frequently used but not proper grammar as it is redundant---close and proximity mean same thing
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- 4 years ago
“Close proximity¨ is not just a tautology. It is also prolix. Its popularity does not excuse it of either burden.