Posted by: Jack Henry | July 18, 2016

Editor’s Corner: Each vs. Every

Good morning! Recently, a friend asked me to explain the difference between each and every. I have to admit, this one wasn’t easy for me to put into simple, everyday language, but I think I’ve got it. So, sit down, pull your socks up, and let’s go.

Use each when you’re talking about a group of things or people, but you want to consider the things or people individually. Each expresses the idea of one by one.

Example: The president spoke to each of the soldiers.

In the sentence above, we are talking about a group (of soldiers) but we want to emphasize that the president spoke to each of them individually, one by one.

Use every when you are referring to a group that is lumped together as one. You regard the group as a whole (not as individuals).

Example: Every enlisted person deserves our respect.

In the sentence above, we are still referring a group, but we are referring to them in general, not individually.

Is this a minor distinction? Yes.

Do most people use these words interchangeably? Yes.

Wouldn’t you like to rise above the masses?

Donna Bradley Burcher | Senior Technical Editor | Symitar®

8985 Balboa Ave. | San Diego, CA 92123 | Ph. 619.278.0432 | Ext: 765432

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