I explained to everybody the reasons for my decision.

I explained to everybody the reasons of my decision.

There is the first sentence in my grammar book. Is it possible to say "the reasons of my decision"? Are both versions interchangeable? They look pretty similar in their meaning.

I see Ngram doesn't like "the reasons of my decision" very much but that phrase appears a lot among Google Books.

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  • 2
    When you get search results, please examine them. On the first page of Google Books results for "the reasons of my decision", 9 out of 10 appeared before 1900. On the first page of results for "the reasons for my decision", all 10 appeared since 1990. That should tell you which version is common nowadays. Commented Jul 8, 2022 at 6:58
  • @MarcInManhattan, Thank you for that information! Only notice that I didn't ask which version is more common. I'm trying to understand it from English grammar view.
    – Sergei
    Commented Jul 8, 2022 at 7:42

2 Answers 2


The correct form is:

I explained to everybody the reasons for my decision.

From Oxford Dictionary:

reason for something
She gave no reasons for her decision.
reason for doing something
I have no particular reason for doubting him.

Also from the same source:

by reason of something (formal)
He was excused by reason of (= because of) his age.


The results are skewed by Charles Lamb's "Inconveniences of Being Hanged", which has often been republished since he wrote it 200 or so years ago. One of the characters does indeed say "...the reasons of..."

I never can be yours. The reasons of my decision, which is final, are in my own breast, and you must everlastingly remain a stranger to them. Assure yourself that I can never cease to esteem you as I ought.

If you Ngram "the reason..." rather than "the reasons..." the result is clearer.

  • 1
    @Mari-Lou A - Thank you :-) Commented Jul 8, 2022 at 14:09

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