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When people write:

Night fell over the city.

what does "over the city" mean? I understand "night fell", but not the "over..." part.

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From Macmillan Dictionary, over "2. on someone or something and covering them". -- By the way, this is just a hint, not an absolute definition. In my opinion, it's not a good idea to substitute one word with its definition. It's helpful to paraphrase, but it's better to regard the paraphrases as assistance, not hindrance. I wish language would be strict and rigid and there would be no room for arguments or interpretations, but it seems it's exactly the opposite. – Damkerng T. Jul 21 '14 at 13:48

Think of it like this... Imagine night being a big blanket. If that blanket fell over(on) the city, it would make the city dark, right?

The sentence means just that. The "over the city" is just an interesting way of explaining that the night time came.

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