1. If you go, bring your lunch.

  2. If you go, take your lunch.

Which sentence is correct?


Both are understandable, but there is a difference in meaning based on the speaker's frame of reference.

If the speaker is not going with you, then "If you go, take your lunch" is most natural.

If the speaker is at the destination already, then they sound most natural saying "If you come, bring your lunch"

"If you go, bring your lunch" is an interesting case.

This has both the person moving away from the speaker, and the lunch coming towards the speaker. This seems like a contradiction, but has a few uses!

If the speaker:

  • will be at the destination
  • will not be travelling with you
  • AND is not already there

Then they might say "if you go, bring your lunch".

For example, you and your friends are all meeting at a park and your friend calls you on the phone before leaving.

Another case for this usage is if the speaker is empathizing strongly with you, like perhaps a parent to their child - especially if there is a sense of teaching or admonishing.

  • +1, looks good. Just wanted to add the definitions from wiktionary. Take, 9.1: (transitive) To carry with one, especially to another place. Bring, 1: (transitive) To transport toward somebody/somewhere – DCShannon Jul 13 '15 at 19:49

Both are correct. They each imply the same thing: If you go, have your lunch with you.

  • 2
    this answer doesn't help to clarify the differences. – Octopus Jul 13 '15 at 19:28

I suggest that it depends on knowledge about the person and if they have a lunch already.

If the speaker knows they have a lunch:

  • If you go, bring your lunch.

If the speaker doesn't know if they have a lunch or not:

  • If you go, take a lunch.
  • What about "If you go, bring a lunch."? That's also perfectly idiomatic. – Nathan Tuggy Jul 13 '15 at 19:38

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