Forget 還是 leave 呢?

有人可能納悶,forget 和 leave 有何關連呢?怎麼可以相提並論?如果你去查字典、詳細看它們的定義,你會發現這兩個動詞有個意思是一樣的,那就是「忘記帶」。Forget 僅指忘了帶某物,而 leave 則可指忘了帶某人或某物,前者一定是無意的,但後者也可能是有意的。由於 leave 必須用在有地點或場所的句子中,一般幾乎都以「留在,遺留在,遺忘在 (某個地點)」來表示 leave 的意思,讓我們未去探究它真正的含意其實是「忘記帶」。

由於 leave 必須與地點連用,而 forget 則不可以,因此經常發生用字錯誤卻不自知或不知錯在哪裡的情況。現在我們就來舉例說明這兩個字在此意思上的正確用法。例如:

  • I forgot my car keys. (我忘了帶車鑰匙) (正)
    I left my car keys. (誤)
  • I’ll have to go back; I’ve forgotten my purse. (我必須回去;我忘了拿錢包) (正)
    I’ll have to go back; I’ve left my purse. (誤)
  • John left his cellphone on my desk. (約翰把他的手機遺留在我的書桌上) (正)
    John left his cellphone. (誤)
    John forgot his cellphone on my desk. (誤)
  • Mary left her son on the bus. (瑪麗把她兒子遺忘在公車上) (正)
    Mary forgot her son on the bus. (誤)
  • My daughter is always leaving her cellphone at home. (我女兒老是把手機留在家裡) (正)
    My daughter is always forgetting her cellphone at home. (誤)
    My daughter is always leaving her cellphone. (誤)
  • They decided to leave the cat at home. (他們決定把貓留在家裡) (有意的行為) (正)

如果你堅持要在沒有提到地點或場所的句子中使用 leave,而且用法要正確無誤,那也未嘗不可,也不是故意找碴,因為 leave behind 這個片語動詞可以符合這項要求。Leave behind 也意為「忘記帶 (某人或某物);留下,遺留在,遺忘在」(無意或有意),受詞可以接在 leave 或 behind 的後面。例如:

  • I left my car keys behind. (我忘了帶車鑰匙) (正)
  • We left in a hurry and I must have left my cellphone behind. (我們走得太匆忙,我一定是忘了拿手機) (正)
  • He had to leave behind his wife and children. (他不得不拋下/丟下/留下他的妻兒) (有意的行為) (正)

Leave behind 可以用在沒有提到地點或場所的句子中,但這不表示它不可用在有地點或場所的句子。例如:

  • Bill left his briefcase behind on the train. (比爾把他的公事包遺忘在火車上) (正)
  • He was forced to leave his family behind in North Korea. (他被迫把他的家人留在北韓) (正)

Leave 和 leave behind 都還有其他常用的意思,但不在這裡的討論範圍內。

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