The university bestowed an honorary degree on her. (O)

The university bestowed an honorary degree to her. (X)

If 'to' is not used, why it is not used?

When you use 'on' instead of 'for/to' as in the sentence above?

PS. As a non-native speaker, 'of' is the same kind of thing. I am familiar with 'for' or 'to' but uncomfortable when it comes to 'of' or 'on'

  • Both of these are awkward and sound non-native. Sorry. I wouldn't use the verb bestowed. This is better "The University awarded her an honorary degree".
    – Billy Kerr
    May 23 at 12:37

1 Answer 1


The simple answer:

To is not used, because the word is bestowed upon/on. That's just how the word works.

The more complex answer (which is just a hypothesis):

Bestow comes from stow, which is a synonym for place. So by bestowing the honorary degree, the university literally places it on the person.

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