Results 1 to 6 of 6

    • Join Date: Aug 2007
    • Posts: 1
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    The difference between "older" and "elder"

    Hello teacher, I'm Charmaine Alaina. I had some difficulties about the difference between "older" and "elder" Would you please to help me? Thank you very much.

  1. RonBee's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Feb 2003
    • Posts: 16,570
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: The difference between "older" and "elder"

    Question: I have been having some difficulties telling the difference between elder and older. Would you help me?

    Answer: Whether there is any difference between the two depends on the sentence.

    Sam is older than Ed.
    Sam is elder than Ed.

    Sam is the older brother.
    Sam is the elder brother.

    ~R


    • Join Date: Aug 2007
    • Posts: 11
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: The difference between "older" and "elder"

    I guess, simply put, older is the comparative form of old (old, older, oldest). Elder isn't a comparative, since there isn't a word such as eld (as far as I know).

  2. matilda
    Guest
    #4

    Re: The difference between "older" and "elder"

    Elder means older but it is used in comp[a]rative form. Although there is no word call[e]d ELD, we use ELDER for comparison especially in written form.
    Last edited by Casiopea; 19-Aug-2007 at 09:53. Reason: style

  3. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #5

    Re: The difference between "older" and "elder"

    Additionally,
    In comparisons between two persons, elder means “older” but not necessarily “old”:
    My elder sister is sixteen; my younger, twelve.
    Eldest is used when three or more persons are compared:

    He is the eldest of four brothers.
    In other contexts elder does denote relatively advanced age but with the added component of respect for a person's achievement, as in an elder statesman. If age alone is to be expressed, one should use older or elderly rather than elder:

    A survey of older Americans; an elderly waiter.
    Unlike elder and its related forms, the adjectives old, older, and oldest are applied to things as well as to persons.

    elder 1. The American HeritageŽ Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000.


    • Join Date: Jul 2007
    • Posts: 67
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #6

    Re: The difference between "older" and "elder"

    RonBee's answer is what I was taught in my school years.

    Quote Originally Posted by RonBee View Post
    Question: I have been having some difficulties telling the difference between elder and older. Would you help me?

    Answer: Whether there is any difference between the two depends on the sentence.

    Sam is older than Ed.
    Sam is elder than Ed.

    Sam is the older brother.
    Sam is the elder brother.

    ~R

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •