We use any and every to talk generally about items in a group. The two words have slightly different meanings. Here we take a look at the difference between any and every in English.
- any = whichever item/items or person/people you choose from a group
- We were allowed to choose any sweet we wanted.
this sweet or that sweet or the other sweet
- any refers to one individual item/person or multiple individual items/people, we can form compounds with any
- anybody/anyone = whichever person
- anything = whichever individual item or items
- anywhere = whichever place
- any time = whichever time
- any in negative sentences refers to none at all
- She doesn’t eat any fruit.
not apples, not oranges, nothing at all
- She doesn’t know any people in her building.
not this person, not that person, no people at all
- every = all the items/people in a group
- Sebastian wanted to buy every sweet in the shop.
this sweet and that sweet and the other sweet
- every refers to all things/people collectively, we can form compounds with every
- everybody/everyone = all people
- everything = all things
- everywhere = all places
- every time = all times
- every in negative sentences refers to not all, but some
- She doesn’t eat every fruit.
she eats some fruits, but not all
- She doesn’t know every person in her building.
she knows some people, but not all