What is the difference between to arise and to occur? Are both interchangeable? I do remember that I have seen the following sentences somewhere; "If a circumstance arises..." "If a circumstance occurs..." However, I feel there should be a nuance between the two. Would you please help on this Thanks in advance
Sep 25, 2018 8:22 AM
Answers · 2
There may be someone on here who can give a more grammatically correct answer, but as a native speaker, here's my two cents: Think of a circumstances as an event that has a beginning, middle and an end. When you say a circumstance arises, there is more focus on the beginning of the event (how it started). When you say a circumstance occurs, then there is less focus on a specific part of the event, but it's talking about the event happening as a whole. I hope that makes sense. Here's some examples off the top of my head. If an emergency situation arises, you need to act in a decisive manner to make sure that the situation is resolved. When an emergency situation occurs, there is a chain of events that happens all the way up until the emergency is resolved. In most situations the words are definitely interchangeable, but this is just a tiny nuance that I could think of.
September 25, 2018
I would probably use "arises" for something that is unexpected or a good thing or a bad thing, something that is going to require a response/decision/change in plans. I might use occur for something more neutral. Example: If the opportunity arises, I may move to New York. If the situation arises, we may need to call in more help. If that occurs, just close the app and reopen it.
September 25, 2018
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