Both vs. Either vs. Neither – English Vocabulary Lesson

Michael Confusing Words 6 Comments

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You can use both, either, and neither when we talk about two things or people.

We use both when we talk about two things or people that are together. We generally use both with and:

  • I have both a Windows and a Mac computer.
  • Jack likes both coffee and tea.
  • Do you want both books, or just one?

We use either when we talk about a choice or alternatives between two things or people. We generally use either with or:

  • Jack doesn’t like either Windows or a Mac computer. He uses Linux.
  • I don’t want either coffee or tea. I prefer milk.
  • You can have either beer or wine. They don’t serve cocktails here.

We use neither when we talk about a negative choice or alternatives between two things. We generally use neither with nor:

  • Neither Windows nor Linux will work for me. I prefer Mac.
  • A: Would you like coffee or tea?
  • B: Neither. Just water is fine for me.
  • I saw neither movie yet. I’ll try to watch them when they come to DVD.

If you know anyone who might be interested in this English language point, why not help them out! Just share this lesson with them. Thanks for studying today!

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