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What is the difference between the following two sentences ?

I wouldn't do it if I were in his position.
I wouldn't do it if I were at his position.

Is the 2nd sentence correct? I'm confused with these uses. Does the first one mean "his situation" and the second one, "his status"?

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  • Position of what... Place?
    – Schwale
    Dec 24, 2015 at 3:29

1 Answer 1

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The first is fairly common when speaking about someone's circumstances, such as their financial state, their job title, or their history. Basically it refers to being in someone's shoes, so to speak.

He's buying a brand new car with all those debts he has? I wouldn't do that if I were in his position.

The second isn't common at all and the only way it works is if you're talking about someone's physical location. I can't even think of a good example for it.

John's on the US/Canadian border and he's going back into the US? I wouldn't do that if I were at his position.

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  • tried google ngram, even that suggests that "at his position" has been used very infrequently... HERE
    – v kumar
    Dec 24, 2015 at 4:11
  • At his position could also refer to a corporate ranking.
    – Peter
    Dec 24, 2015 at 4:59

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