2 Answers

  1. Win the competition, win the cards. It may not be quite the right match, but still. Winning is much more important than winning. Although both winning and winning can come at a high price. In the word “win” itself, there is some benefit that the winner receives. Winning is more about the perception itself, overcoming difficulties and obstacles (perhaps yourself). Something more I can't squeeze out of myself 🙂

  2. To begin with, it is worth looking at some differences in the compatibility of these two words (some aspects of it can be seen, for example, in the ruSkELL database).

    They usually win something: prizes, titles, medals. In other words, a direct addition expresses a reward for the achieved result. And in some cases, the opponents do not matter at all or they are unknown: if I won a million in the lottery, I am completely uninterested in who else participated in this lottery, only the fact of winning and what I got in the end is important. It also happens that there are no opponents at all, as in cases like “buy time”. However, you can also specify who I competed with by using the preposition “y”: win from a neighbor, win from competitors. In this case, it is usually assumed that what I won from someone, this person lost at the same time-examples like “win a thousand rubles from a fellow traveler” clearly indicate that the fellow traveler gave me a thousand out of his own pocket; this phrase would look strange in a situation where we both participated in the lottery, and I got a lucky ticket, but he simply did not get anything.

    With “win”, this combination is impossible: you can't win the award or win the cup. But you can defeat someone-an opponent, a villain, a world champion. That is, first of all, it is important to us who exactly the struggle was with. The prize is not so interesting or simply absent – often the main result is the fact of winning, as in contexts like “defeat crime” or”defeat the enemy army”.

    Thus, it turns out that in general, they win rather a certain specific prize, and sometimes taking it away from someone, and defeat the opposing force, without necessarily receiving something material in return.

    But this is not the end of the question: verbs can be used without direct additions, and even if they are present, sometimes there are ambiguous situations. So there are other, more abstract differences.

    Winning often involves performing certain actions to achieve it, you can not win in the draw or in the lottery – everything depends solely on the will of chance. Winning does not necessarily require such an active participation in what is happening. This is probably the reason for the “win by” design (win by speed, win by price). This is a comparison of the characteristics of objects, they do not come into direct conflict with each other and do not do anything by themselves to win, so “winning” is not very appropriate here.

    On the other hand, they win more often in games, contests, contests and competitions, that is, in something where there is a game aspect. “Win” can also refer to the situation of a fight, war (win a fight, win a battle), including metaphorical ones, when the “war” is conducted quite strenuously, but without blood and victims (defeat corruption, defeat laziness).

    There are quite a few contexts in which both of these verbs fit perfectly, since they are talking about games or something similar, but both sides are taking active actions and/or engaging in a direct clash: winning a competition/dance competition/World Cup and winning a competition/dance competition/World Cup. In such cases, there is almost no difference, but “win” is slightly more expressive, so it is usually used when you need to emphasize the significance of the achieved result.

    So, a short summary: “win” is used in cases where a) the prize is particularly important; b) there is no obvious opponent; c) the result is determined by chance or theoretical characteristics; d) we are talking about game competitions. “Win” is also found if a) the defeated opponent is particularly important; b) the participants directly influence the result; c) we are talking not only about games, but also about wars/fights; d) you need to give importance and pathos.

    From the non-obvious, you can recall, for example, such expressions as “win the battle/battle”. It would seem that there is no clear reward for this, the enemy is quite there, the parties actively influence the outcome, and there are no games here. Therefore, it is not very clear where “win” comes from, which is used on a par with”win”. There is an opinion that the reason for this is that military campaigns are often perceived as global games – especially by commanders and rulers sitting at the headquarters. Hence the combination with the “game” context. The same sort of metaphor has given rise to the expressions “win the arms race” or the occasional ” win the war.”

    The same is true for the phrases “win the court” and “win the election”: they are also similar to competitions, and also do not include a direct clash of the parties, which makes it possible to use the verb “win”. With elections, opponents may not be very important at all: “winning the election” can be found, for example, in historical articles about some presidents, when it doesn't really matter who else ran, it only matters that the person we are interested in became president.

    By the way, surprisingly enough, “victory” really comes from the word “trouble”, although I rather expected that this is a popular interpretation. In any case, no trace of this connection in the meaning of the word “win” is no longer visible: now it is strictly positive, and no troubles are usually associated with it.

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