This sentence:

I took his word for it.

I know the meaning of the sentence:

I believed what he said was true.

My question is "why". Or, in other words, how to interpret this grammatically, especially the part "for it". How does the preposition "for" work here? What does "it" mean?

Thank you for your help!

1 Answer 1

  • I took his word for it.

It refers to whatever the situation is/was/. You have not told us what it is so we cannot specifically say what it refers to in your question.

Here is an example of the usage:

When he told me he had not stolen the cake, I took his word for it.

it= telling me he did not steal the cake.

  • The it pronoun refers back to any particular situation in a context.

Would you take my word for that statement? Would you take my word for it?

  • To add to this: in this expression, "took" means "accepted (e.g. as evidence or proof)". So when I say "I'll take your word for it" I mean that I'll accept your statement or your promise (your "word") as sufficient proof. Therefore I don't need to question or investigate further.
    – TypeIA
    Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 16:42
  • Thanks for the answer and the comment. So basically does "it" mean some statement made by someone, and "take one's word for it" mean "take one's word as a proof for the statement?
    – KTDon
    Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 16:49
  • You take someone's word for what your interlocutor or another person said previously about something. Yes, the it refers to the other person's words, exactly.
    – Lambie
    Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 16:53
  • Alright. Everything is clear. Thanks!
    – KTDon
    Commented Aug 23, 2019 at 17:02

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