16/5/18 The Difference between Rob and Steal

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Rob and steal both mean ‘take something from someone without permission’.

ROB
Rob focuses on the place or person from which the thing is taken.

Examples:
The gang robbed three banks over a period of six months, but were finally caught.
Our local post office was robbed early on Tuesday morning.
A young woman was attacked and robbed as she walked home from work last night.

  • When we are talking about a house, we use burgle:

The house was burgled while they were all sleeping.
Not: The house was robbed

STEAL
Steal focuses on the thing that is taken.

Examples:
The thieves entered the museum through the roof and stole three paintings worth more than two million euros.
Our car was stolen from outside our house last week.

  • We usually don’t say rob + object stolen:

He stole my wallet.
Not: He robbed my wallet.

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