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English to English translations [PRO] General / Conversation / Greetings / Letters
English term or phrase:notify to
I often read the term "notify to" and I was wondering if it sounds as strange to you as it does to me.
For instance: "The change in the number of study subjects must be notified to the competent authorities." OR "The event was notified to the government."
I am inclined to use the passive in these instances or find another workaround rather than using "notify to" because it sounds unidiomatic to me. Is it an accepted use in legal terminology or is it simply wrong?
All right, you have convinced me now that there is notify "to" as well as "of", but I still think that any active sentence whether with "to" or "of" sounds awkward.
The examples in the Oxford Dictionary are both in the passive : "You will be notified of our decision" and "Births and deaths are required by law to be notified to the Registrar". I have yet to be convinced that a sentence like " The new father notified his child's birth to the Registrar" or " Yesterday I notified the sighting of Colorado beetles to the Min of Agriculture" would sound good.
I would only use this verb in the personal passive and with "of"
The authorities must be notified of the changes...
The government was notified of the event...
Or with a modal verb as Tony suggests
The fire brigade must be notified (OF that fact).
It is possible that contemporary usage is different, but I find it awkward. If the Asker lives in U.K. he will have more opportunities to hear it if it is a new idiom and not only an AE one.
In both meanings: it's just that in 'to notify s/o of sthg', the direct object is the s/o, whereas in 'to notify sthg to s/o', it is the sthg that becomes the direct object.
The latter usage lends itself perhaps slightly better to a passive construction: "sthg must be notifed to s/o", but of course can't be used intransitively. "s/o must be notified of sthg", while perfectly possible and certainly frequently used, is perhaps a tad more awkward. And of course, if the transitive is required with only the direct object, then no preposition is needed at all: "In the event of fire, the fire-brigade must be notified [...of that fact]"!
"that's a transitive verb", and was the only reason I clicked on the question. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/notify?show=0&t=12... bears this out. My Concise Oxford brick does not give "notify to", although I can accept that it has gained currency - in much the same way as "report back" has. In my mind "to notify" is to "give notice to", and therefore no need to repeat the implied "to".
Automatic update in 00:
10 mins confidence: peer agreement (net): +8
notify (sth) to (so)
Explanation: Perfectly OK in my opinion.
My Oxford gives two usages:
The first is the one you suggested - you notify someone of/about something = inform
The other is also OK - you notify something to someone = report
-------------------------------------------------- Note added at 12 mins (2010-12-30 13:38:36 GMT) --------------------------------------------------
It's not just legal terminology but it is official/formal rather than normal spoken English.
BTW I don't think you can notify someone to someone else - with a person you have to use "report":
The criminal must be reported to the police
The crime must by notified/reported to the police
Sheila Wilson Spain Local time: 18:56 Meets criteria Works in field Native speaker of: English PRO pts in category: 28