I keep seeing "Look at" and "Look over" being used, but I don't quite understand the difference between them.

The boy looked over her.

The boy looked at her.

  • "Look at" means the subject is focusing his vision on the object. "Look over" could mean a couple of things but in this case I would say it means that the subject focuses his vision above the object (as in: the boy looked over her shoulder).
    – Upper_Case
    Commented May 19, 2016 at 0:46

1 Answer 1


The boy looked her over.

He examined her from head to toe. He could be attracted to her beauty, or looking for an injury after she fell off her bike, or he could be looking for ticks after a walk in the woods.

The boy looked over her.

He looked over her head at something else in the distance.

The boy looked at her.

He could be looking her in the eye, or looking on as she does something, or looking as she does nothing but stand or sit. He turned his gaze towards her.

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