I have a question about "from across the street" in the following quote:

Should he really send in his explanation? He wondered about it. If nobody believed him, and in this case that would be understandable, he could bring Mrs. Grubach in as a witness, or even the old pair from across the street, who probably even now were on their way over to the window opposite.

(The Trial, Franz Kafka)

I think two interpretations are possible.

The first one is "bring A from B" as in "I brought this book from the shelf."

The second one is "bring A, which is situated across the street."

But I think the second one is more natural here because the sentence is not about yanking this old couple from their house.

I think it is more like, "a man from America."

Which interpretation is correct?

  • The issue is quite simple: "from" here indicates the place where people are. As you said.. A man from America.. Or a man from across the street.
    – user5267
    Apr 20, 2014 at 22:32

2 Answers 2


from across the street here refers to the old pair living across the street that is on the other side of the street probably with respect to Mrs. Grubach.

from here is used to indicate a place where they are located.


From means provenance as in a place. The "old pair from across the street" means the elderly couple who live in the house on the other side of the street.

  • 1
    Let's make this point clear. I don't agree with your points A and B ( which are a bit confused actually) I and KCH explained clearly what "from" means in this sentence. It does not indicates movenent, but only a state.. The state of being on the other side of the street.
    – user5267
    Apr 20, 2014 at 22:52

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