3

In this sentence, what is the meaning of further up the train?

I did not see the lady again until the following day, when both she and I got on the next train from Dresden to Ruritania. She was further up the train, however, and did not see me.

  • Have you tried searching it up first? – ʇolɐǝz ǝɥʇ qoq Sep 2 '14 at 1:35
  • yes but I didn't find a definition for it – user37421 Sep 2 '14 at 1:42
  • 1
    Can you provide some context? – Manish Giri Sep 2 '14 at 2:15
  • "I did not see the lady again until the following day, when both she and I got on the next train from Dresden to Ruritania. She was further up the train, however, and did not see me." – user37421 Sep 2 '14 at 2:53
  • It means she was in a train car attached nearer to the front of the train. – Jim Sep 2 '14 at 3:01
8

"Further up" quite literally means higher; it is very frequently used to indicate that something is "closer to the top" (as in further up the mountain). In cases where the object being referenced is horizontal, the "top" of the object will be its head or front.
In the case of a train (clearly a horizontal object), the front is the engine; further up the train is therefore somewhere closer to the engine.

  • I would not say it was that specific as to indicate nearer or further from the engine. The speaker could be using it in refereance to the direction they were heading or facing. eg. if the platform entrance was at the front of the train, further up the train could refer to being nearer to the back. – JamesRyan Sep 2 '14 at 12:39
  • @JamesRyan, I expect most people in that case would say "further down". – Hellion Sep 2 '14 at 13:04
  • Maybe that emphasis is regional, you certainly couldn't count on it. In my experience people use 'further up' as a direct replacement for 'further along' with no added implication. – JamesRyan Sep 2 '14 at 14:23
4

Look up this meaning of further up in the Oxford Dictionaries:

2.1 Beyond the point already reached or the distance already covered:

Amelie decided to drive further up the coast

In the given context:

She was further up the train, however, and did not see me.

The sentence implies that the lady was towards the beginning (so to speak) of the train, ie. near the engine. That's why "further up the train" is used.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.