fbpx

Difference between “Above” and “Over”

Published by My Lingua Academy on

Both “over” and “above” mean ‘higher than’ and in many cases are interchangeable:


She was sitting and watching the clouds above/over her head go by.
There was a beautiful rainbow above/over the horizon.

When to Use “Over” and “Above”


The main difference between them is the context, e.g. over indicates movement, while above refers to a location.

We use over, but not above, to imply movement from one location to another:
Jane was going over the street.
If you want a beer, you should go to the pub over there.

On the other hand, we use above, but not over, to imply the location:
The book was on the shelf above the desk.
She put her handbag in the locker above her head.


We use over, but nor above, when there is contact between the things:
She put a blanket over her to get warmer (not She put a blanket above her to get warmer)

Over and Above


We use above, but not over, when something is higher than something else, without touching:
The bird was singing above her head. (not The bird was singing over her head)


We usually use over, not above, with numbers:
There were over a thousand people at the demonstrations. (not There were above a thousand people at the demonstrations)

Over 300 people died in the devastating earthquake (not above 300 people died in the devastating earthquake)

Download a free worksheet with lesson and exercise:

Do the quiz to perfect your knowledge:

If you really want to learn English but you don’t know how to do it and where to start, please contact us. We will help you continue your learning where you once stopped. Book a free online English lesson with one of our expert native English teachers and take a test and consultation.

Drop us a line on WhatsApp


My Lingua Academy

My Lingua Academy is an online school of English language. We give one-on-one lessons to students of English of all ages and all levels of knowledge all around the world. With us you can prepare for written assignments and exams, attend a general or business English course, or have conversation classes with qualified native English teachers who have years of experience.

3 Comments

Ferdinando Soares · 8 Nov 2020 at 1:55 pm

Thank you
Useful for me 👍

Commonly Used Holiday Collocations - My Lingua Academy · 7 Mar 2021 at 6:45 pm

[…] Difference between “Above” and “Over” […]

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: