Use of "thought about" vs "thought of"

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I recently wrote: I saw a poem and thought about John Doe. Should I have written : I saw a poem and thought of John Doe?

asked Jul 30 '13 at 19:33 Sue New member

2 answers


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I saw a poem and thought of John Doe is correct. We  use "thought of " when something strikes our mind immediately. We use "thought about" when we think of something for a long time.

link comment answered Jul 31 '13 at 04:35 Sanjay Expert
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I believe either one is correct. I don't know that I would make the same distinction that Sanjay has. But, even if so, there is no context to know if you only thought of John for a moment or continued thinking of him long after first seeing the poem.

link comment answered Jul 31 '13 at 05:49 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

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