Definitions of to

  1. The preposition to primarily indicates approach and arrival, motion made in the direction of a place or thing and attaining it, access; and also, motion or tendency without arrival; movement toward; -- opposed to from.
  2. In a very general way, and with innumerable varieties of application, to connects transitive verbs with their remoter or indirect object, and adjectives, nouns, and neuter or passive verbs with a following noun which limits their action. Its sphere verges upon that of for, but it contains less the idea of design or appropriation; as, these remarks were addressed to a large audience; let us keep this seat to ourselves; a substance sweet to the taste; an event painful to the mind; duty to God and to our parents; a dislike to spirituous liquor.
  3. ( before consonant te, before vowel too, emphat. or at end of clause too), prep. In the direction of( place, person, thing, condition, quality, &c.; with or without the implication of intention or of arrival), as was walking over to Bath, on his way to the station, fled to Rome, throw it to me, got to the house by four, to bed with you!, fluttered to the pavement, was committed to the flames, house looks to the south, held it to the light, to arms!, hand to hand, told him to his face, was carried to destruction, letter has come to hand, fell to work, fell to musing, tends or has a tendency to indolence, slow to anger, appointed to a post, born to a great fortune, all to no purpose, to his shame be it said; as far as, not short of, as true to the end, cut him to the heart, a Home-ruler to the core, fought to the last gasp, hit it to the boundary, correct to a hair\'s-breadth, suits him to a T, acted his part to perfection, might run to £5, drank himself to death, might argue to all eternity, & so on to the end of the chapter; ( of comparison, ratio, adaptation, reference, &c.) this is nothing to what it might be, 3 is to 4 as 6 is to 8, ten to one he will find it out, two to one is not fair play, not up to the mark, equal to the occasion, made to order, drawn to scale, not to the point, true to life, will speak to that question later, sang to his guitar, cannot do it to his liking, corresponding, compared, inferior, &c., to; ( archaic) for, by way of, as took her to wife, has a duke to his father-in-law; ( introducing indirect object of vb, recipient, possessor, &c., or person or thing affected by the action, quality, &c.; alternative constrr. as shown) lend it or them, or this &c., or your knife &c., to John or to him( also lend John or him this &c. or your knife or rarely it or them, lend it or rarely them him or rarely John, but not lend this &c., or your knife him, or John, nor lend to him or John it or them, nor in ordinary prose lend to him or John this &c. or your knife), write to me, explain it to me, apply to the secretary, seems to me absurd, to my mind or thinking, revolting to sane minds, pleasant to the taste, impervious to weather, obedient to command, unkind to him, has been a good father to them, what\'s that to you?, drink to me only with thine eyes, here\'s to you( your health), broken in to the saddle, accustomed to it, next door to us, ready to his hand, has not a shilling to his name, takes no wine to his dinner( archaic), there is a moral to it, there is no end to it; would to God( I wish it were or had been God\'s will) that; ( as sign of infinitive, expressing purpose, consequence, &c., limiting the meaning of adj., or merely forming verbal n.; omitted after can, do, may, must, shall, will, & as shown, cf. also DARE, NEED, GO) he proposes to stay, declines to go, wants to know, began to sing( or began singing), fail to understand, does it to annoy, the matter is difficult to explain, it is useless to rebel( rebellion is useless), allow me to remind( but let me remind) you, was seen to fall( but I saw him fall), was heard to complain( but I heard him complain), floor was felt to tremble( but felt the floor tremble), was never known or found to fail, have sometimes known or found it( to) fail, make him repeat it, he was made( usu. to) repeat it, help me( to) lift this, please( to usu. omitted) shut the door, was pleased( thought fit) to be angry, I prefer to go( but had rather go, had as lief go), had my work to do, had to do my work( but will no. have you talk such nonsense), was about to protest, ( archaic) he is much to seek( deficient) in that respect, ( archaic) what went ye out for to see?, to WIT; ( as substitute for infinitive) meant to call but forgot to, had no time to, you promised to. [ old English]
  4. To the normal or required position or condition, esp. to a standstill, as BRING, COME, FALL, GO, HEAVE, LIE, to; the door is to( just not shut); to& FRO.