Ever = 1. at all time; always;
2. at any time “Have you ever been to Europe?”
3. in any way; at all
4. to a great extent or degree “Was she ever mad?”
Never = 1. not ever; on no occasion; at no time
“He had never been there before.”
You never can be sure.”
2. not at all; in no away;absolutely not;
“That will never do.”
Never means “at no point in time”. The term comes from the eords “no” and “ever”, meaning that something is not ever going to happen.
Study this example conversation:
Dave: Have you traveled a lot, Jane?
Jane: Yes, I have in 47 different countries.
Dave: Really? Have you ever been to China?
Jane: Yes, I’ve visited China twice.
Dave: What about India?
Jane: No, I’ve never been to India.
When we talk about a period of time that continues up to the present, we use the present perfect. Jane and Dave are talking about the places Jane has visited in her life (which is a period continuing up to the present).
We often use ever and never with the present perfect.
Have you ever eaten caviar?
We have never eaten caviar.
Use the present perfect to say that you have never done something or that you haven’t done something during a period of time that continues up to the present.
The difference between ever and never:
We use never to give negative meaning in a sentence .
E.g: I never drink alcohol
Use ever in queries as below and I think we expect negative answer in that case.
Have you ever gone to London?
When we use nver and ever together, it implies that the subject has taken a decision not to do some thing. It may also be used to suggest strongly.
e.g: I never ever trouble my neighbours.
Never ever speak on the phone while you drive.
I hope some senior member corrects me if I am wrong.
Last edited by ramanji; 01-Feb-2008 at 11:45.
Reason: Problem with meaning
And I think we should also mention that 'ever' requires non-assertiveness, that is, questions and negatives and some if-clauses, .... at least that's what I've been told: If I ever saw her with that guy, I would report them to Peter's father....