He was driving leftward

They were walking rightward

I was looking rightward

Turn rightward when you get to the corner

He was looking upward

Do these sentences sound fine grammatically? And why are these prepositions not used? Nowadays 'Turn right' would be the most suitable, but why? Was it only because people got used to this or is there any other reason?

1 Answer 1


While we do say "upward" and "downward", "rightward" and "leftward" are practically never used. In this case there is really no "why", that's just how it is.

If you were to use them in a sentence people would understand what you mean, but it would not be idiomatic. Instead use "to the left" or "to the right".

  • So, although not idiomatically, they are fine grammatically?
    – Davyd
    Jan 6, 2017 at 12:25
  • Although it's rare they are used so yeah, probably
    – Andrew
    Jan 6, 2017 at 15:50

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