How to use “Come and Go”

Speaker’s/Hearer’s position

We use come for movements to the place where the speaker or hearer is.

  1. Maria, would you come here, please? ~ I’m coming. (NOT … I’m going.)
  2. When did you come to live here?
  3. (on the phone): Can I come and see you?

We use go for movements to other places.

  • I want to go and live in Greece
  • Let’s go and see Peter and Diane.
  • In 1577, he went to study in Rome.

Speaker’s/Hearer’s past or future position

We can use come for a movement to a place where the speaker or hearer
already was or will be at the time of the movement.

Compare: 

  • What time did I come to see you in the office yesterday?
  • I went to John’s office yesterday, but he wasn’t in.
  • Will you come and visit me in hospital when I have my operation?
  • He’s going into hospital next week.
  • Susan can’t come to your birthday party.
  • She’s going to see her mother.

Joining a movement

Come (with) can be used to talk about joining a movement of the speaker’s/
hearer’s, even if
go is used for the movement itself.

  • We’re going to the cinema tonight. Would you like to come with us?

Somebody else’s position

Sometimes when we are talking about somebody else (not the speaker or
hearer), that person can become the centre of our attention. In that case, we
use
come for movements to the place where he/she is (or was or will be). This often happens in stories.

  • He waited till four o’clock, but she didn’t come.

Come to; Come from

Come to can mean arrive at.

  • Carry straight on till you come to a crossroads.

Come from is used (in the present) to say where people’s homes are or were.

  • She comes from Scotland, but her mother’s Welsh.
  • Originally I come from Hungary, but I’ve lived here for twenty years.
    (NOT Originally I came from Hungary … )
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