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    #1

    eats everything/will eat anything

    Are these sentences correct:

    1-My cat eats everything.
    2-My cat will eat anything.
    3-My cat eats anything.


    I am not sure that "3" would be considered correct in formal English. I think "2" is better but I am pretty sure people use sentences like "3".

    The three sentences are exagerations though, since there is no way a cat can eat planets and stars and... I guess context limits the meaning of "anything" and "everything". Still, the meanings are vague. Does it chew plastic objects or not? Does it eat the carpet? Does it only eat stuff that is normally considered food?

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: eats everything/will eat anything

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan View Post
    Are these sentences correct:

    1-My cat eats everything.
    2-My cat will eat anything.
    3-My cat eats anything.


    I am not sure that "3" would be considered correct in formal English. I think "2" is better but I am pretty sure people use sentences like "3".

    The three sentences are exagerations though, since there is no way a cat can eat planets and stars and... I guess context limits the meaning of "anything" and "everything". Still, the meanings are vague. Does it chew plastic objects or not? Does it eat the carpet? Does it only eat stuff that is normally considered food?
    I prefer 2 and 3, but 1 sounds unnatural. Of course, as you say, they are exaggerations as no animal actually will eat anything (or everything!) but the idea is clear to most native speakers. We don't just use it for animals.

    I'm really lucky. My daughter isn't fussy about food. She'll eat anything.
    I don't cause problems when we go out for dinner. I eat anything.

    As you can see, either the present tense or the use of "will eat" meaning "is happy to eat" or "is willing to eat" is acceptable.

    I would say that "anything" is usually more appropriate in most cases. However, "everything" could be used to be particularly emphatic especially when it's almost true.

    I have a 2-month old puppy at home. It's a nightmare. When I go out, she eats everything in the house.

    In that example, it probably does mean that the puppy eats/chews a lot of non-food items - the furniture, clothing, books etc.

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    #3

    Re: eats everything/will eat anything

    Thanks a lot Emsr2d2.

    I guess it was a bit more complicated than I had thought! There is a difference between "eats everything" and "eats anything".

    Would you say that "eats anything" and "will eat anything" have positive connotations and "eats everything" has negative ones?

    My cats eats anything. Feeding it is no problem at all.
    My cats eats everything. It is destroying the carpet and the curtains and even chews on the legs of tables and chairs.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: eats everything/will eat anything

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan View Post
    Thanks a lot Emsr2d2.

    I guess it was a bit more complicated than I had thought! There is a difference between "eats everything" and "eats anything".

    Would you say that "eats anything" and "will eat anything" have positive connotations and "eats everything" has negative ones?

    My cats eats anything. Feeding it is no problem at all.
    My cats eats everything. It is destroying the carpet and the curtains and even chews on the legs of tables and chairs.
    Your two examples are perfect and in those contexts, you're right about the positive and negative connotations of each. That does not mean necessarily that they will always have the same connotations.

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