I always wondered this special use of the preposition.

She jumped to climb/reach/any fitting verb

but then,

She jumped to death?

Is it some special use of to death such as jumped to death, stabbed to death and so on?

  • "Jump to death" is a phrase you will likely only find in written press titles (for succinctness). In its full form, the phrase is "jump to his/her/their death" (note the possessive). – JMB Sep 29 '14 at 13:30

In the first case, "to" stands for "in order to". That's the regular usage, no surprise here.

The second one, however, is more of an idiomatic phrase which you can't really break down. All you need to remember is that "do sth (to sb) to death" means "do something which would eventually lead to one's death" - as in "he drunk himself to death", or "I stabbed him to death".

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  • For example, starved to death, not starved to his death. – user6951 Sep 29 '14 at 14:14
  • @CarSmack Yes, "to his death" seems to be mostly used with verbs like fell, jumped, plummeted, etc. Again, I don't think there's a reason for that other than it being a coined phrase. – Maciej Stachowski Sep 29 '14 at 14:18

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