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Edited:

I am wondering if the two sentences below mean the same and can be used interchangeably:

1.a. How far is it from the Earth to the moon?
1.b. How far is the Earth from moon?
(Asks a child from their father.)

If the don't, then please explain the reason to me.

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  • 1
    Asks a child to their father.
    – Mari-Lou A
    May 18, 2020 at 7:08
  • An article is missing in 1.b
    – Mari-Lou A
    May 18, 2020 at 7:10
  • Wasn't it better to say: "asks their father a child" @Mari-Lou A?
    – A-friend
    May 18, 2020 at 8:02
  • 1
    That is not an English sentence, why are you putting the subject at the end of the sentence. It's SVO = A child asks their father, is the simplest and best word order.
    – Mari-Lou A
    May 18, 2020 at 8:04

1 Answer 1

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1.a. How far is it from the Earth to the moon?

1.b. How far is the Earth from the moon?

1.a. and 1.b. are pretty close to being identical. In practice, 1.a. would be more likely to be used if someone were planning to move something from the Earth to the Moon, or if someone were planning to travel from the Earth to the Moon.

For example "That astronaut is going to travel to the Moon." "Oh really? How far is it from the Earth to the Moon?"

"The Moon looks really small even thought it's not that close." "Oh really? How from is the Moon from the Earth?"

But I say the usages are "more likely" because in reality you could hear either sentence in either situation.

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