Difference Between Through and Throughout

Main Difference – Through vs. Throughout

Through and throughout are two words that often confuse many of us. Though these two words look and sound similar, they cannot be used interchangeably. The main difference between through and throughout is that throughout means in every part of a place of place or an object whereas through can refer to several meanings, the most common meaning being ‘by means of’.

Through – Meaning and Usage

The preposition through can refer to the following meanings.

 ‘From one location to another’ – in at one end, side, or surface and out at the other or past/ beyond

Sunlight streamed through the window.

Chaos ensued as soon as she stepped through the doorway.

‘During the whole period of’

She worked through the night.

I know you have been through a difficult period.

 ‘Inspecting all or part of a collection’

She searched for it, flipping through all the pages.

‘By means of’ – the manner in which something was achieved/cause

Mice have entered the place through a small crack in the wall.

I corresponded with her through the mail.

Difference Between Through and Throughout

The sunlight streamed through the window.

Throughout – Meaning and Usage

Throughout can be used as an adjective as well as a preposition. It is similar to all over, right through, all around, etc. It has two principal meanings.

In every part of a place or object

His voice reverberated throughout the forest.

The king ordered that this rule should be followed throughout his kingdom.

The house has wooden floors throughout.

This company has branches throughout America.

From beginning to the end of a period or an event.

I stayed with my in-laws throughout my pregnancy.

He has been living with his parents throughout his life.

The article contained important events that took place throughout the year.

Throughout her life, she has been a firm supporter of women’s rights.

Main Difference - Through vs Throughout

A state of emergency was declared throughout the country.

Difference Between Through and Throughout

Though it is not difficult to identify the difference between through and throughout by looking at the different meanings and examples separately, you might face confusions in distinguishing the difference between these two prepositions in practical usage. For example, consider the two examples below.

Her voice reverberated through the hall.

Her voice reverberated throughout the hall.

The first sentence implies that the voice traveled from one end to the other end of the hall. The second implies the voice was heard in every corner of the hall. The second sentence also emphasizes on the strength and audibility of the voice.

The meanings of these words can be summarized as below.

Through can be used to indicate,

The manner in which something is achieved.

location (from one location to another or across something)

Time (during the whole period of)

Completion of an activity

Throughout can be used to indicate,

In every part of a place or object

From beginning to the end of a period or an eventDifference Between Through and throughout - INFOGRAPHIC

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