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Gogo 發問時間: 社會與文化語言 · 8 年前

1題選擇題 date/trace back to


The custom can _________ the tenth century.

1) date back to 2) trace back to 3) be dated back to 4) be traced back to

date back to 與 trace back to 這兩個片語的意思是否一樣? 可以互相代換嗎?


2 個解答

  • 8 年前

    To answer your question, I like to divide into two halves:

    (1) The difference between "trace back" and "date back"

    For "trace back", it means, you can FOLLOW its history back in time.

    For "date back", say "date back to 1900", it means, it ORIGINATES in


    From the above saying, you can see they are NOT interchangeable, because they don't mean the same.

    (2) Active and Passive tense

    In your questioned sentence, the subject is "the custom". It is a thing that has NO ability to do anything on its own, therefore,

    To use "trace back", since such an action would be done by people not the event itself, so you shall use a "passive tense" as " be traced back to".

    To use "date back", it means when it originates, so you can use "active tense" as "date back to"

    However, the questioned sentence talks about "the custom" that has been continuing since the tenth century until now (in my opinion). Therefore, it is talking about TRACING BACK the history, you thus shall choose "4)".

    Of course, you can interpret it as it talks about when it originates, then you would choose "1)" After all, there is NO other sentences to determine what the exact situation is.

    2012-10-13 13:35:10 補充:

    "date back" just to specify the date or time it originates, there is NO history involves !!!

    2012-10-13 14:08:11 補充:

    look like I make the same mistake again:

    since such an ...., so you shall use ...

    It is NOT a good idea to use "so", please ignore that "so" when you read. :-( ...

    參考資料: self
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  • jerry
    Lv 5
    8 年前

    According to the context, both(3) and (4) should be correct.

    And yes, both phrases are interchangeable.

    In active sentences, the thing doing the action is the subject of the sentence and the thing receiving the action is the object.

    In passive sentences, the thing receiving the action is the subject of the sentence and the thing doing the action is optionally included near the end of the sentence. You can use the passive form if you think that the thing receiving the action is more important or should be emphasized. You can also use the passive form if you do not know who is doing the action or if you do not want to mention who is doing the action.

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