Results 1 to 5 of 5
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Tuvalu
      • Current Location:
      • Tuvalu

    • Join Date: Oct 2007
    • Posts: 1,860
    #1

    each/every

    An average of 22 people are charged each day, almost one every hour.

    An average of 22 people are charged every day, almost one every hour.

    An average of 22 people are charged each day, almost one each hour.

    An average of 22 people are charged every day, almost one each hour.

    What's the correct way, please?
    Thanks.

  1. Monticello's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Feb 2009
    • Posts: 455
    #2

    Re: each/every

    Quote Originally Posted by jctgf View Post
    An average of 22 people are charged each day, almost one every hour.

    An average of 22 people are charged every day, almost one every hour.

    An average of 22 people are charged each day, almost one each hour.

    An average of 22 people are charged every day, almost one each hour.

    What's the correct way, please?
    Thanks.
    Hi jctgf,

    You pose an interesting usage question that prompts me -- a native English speaker from the USA -- to pause before answering. Here's what I mean by this: Generally speaking, the sound of the language, that is, what one is used to hearing in speech, often influences one's first choice(s) for usage. But does that "gut reaction" mean that other choice(s) are necessarily incorrect? Oftentimes -- yes, but at other times -- well ...??? At these other times, especially when one is looking for "preciseness" of expression and meaning, a dictionary or usage reference must be consulted.

    And so, being American, and also being very familiar with how the Usage Panel for my preferred dictionary The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language (AHDEL) reviews current American usage, I turn to this now to either confirm -- or correct -- my instincts.

    Below are the (partial) entries for the words "each" and "every" taken from the AHDEL Fourth Edition:
    each PRONUNCIATION: chADJECTIVE:Being one of two or more considered individually; every: Each person cast a vote. My technique improved with each lesson.

    every SYLLABICATION:eve·ryPRONUNCIATION: vrADJECTIVE:1a. Constituting each and all members of a group without exception. b. Being all possible: had every chance of winning, but lost. 2. Being each of a specified succession of objects or intervals: every third seat; every two hours. 3. Being the highest degree or expression of: showed us every attention; had every hope of succeeding.

    After reading the two entries, what do you think? Is there a subtle difference between the two words?

    -I think so. And based on this subtle distinction, I would choose only two of your four sentences for conveying what -- I think -- is the intended meaning. (And here too is something for you to consider: What is the intended meaning?)

    But before I divulge which two are my choices, why don't you, based upon a review of the above two entries, first make an attempt?

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Tuvalu
      • Current Location:
      • Tuvalu

    • Join Date: Oct 2007
    • Posts: 1,860
    #3

    Re: each/every

    thank you for your interest.
    it's a tricky situation in English.
    I'd say that the four sentences are possible.
    I think #3 is good but that's not the one I found in the newspaper and that's why I posted the question.
    sometimes it's easy to distinguish between the two words but not in this case.
    thanks.

  2. Monticello's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Feb 2009
    • Posts: 455
    #4

    Re: each/every

    Quote Originally Posted by jctgf View Post
    thank you for your interest.
    it's a tricky situation in English.
    I'd say that the four sentences are possible.
    I think #3 is good but that's not the one I found in the newspaper and that's why I posted the question.
    sometimes it's easy to distinguish between the two words but not in this case.
    thanks.
    Hi jctgf,

    I would agree with you – that all four sentences are certainly possible, as well as acceptable – depending upon the intended meaning. My preference, however, is for only the first two:
    1) An average of 22 people are charged each day, almost one every hour.
    2) An average of 22 people are charged every day, almost one every hour.
    Here’s why:

    Though one may consider, from a read of the entries of “each” and “every” excerpted above in my previous post, the two words to be somewhat synonymous, the most salient semantic difference between the two words is that “each” primarily connotes “Being one of two or more considered individually,” while the primary connotation of “every” is “[c]onstituting each and all members of a group without exception.” (emphases, mine). Thus, “each” implies an individual focus while “every” does not.

    So how does this subtle distinction apply to my preference for sentences 1) and 2)? - Consider the following:

    The collection of data that results in the statistic quoted above, i.e., almost 1 person per hour, most likely has no particular focus upon any individual hour; thus, every hour (whereas highly unlikely, each hour). The same consideration could also be applied to the collection of data within the longer unit of time, i.e., a day; thus also, every day.

    In considering the longer unit of time, i.e., a day, however, a collection of data that arrives at the above quoted statistic, i.e., an average of 22 people per day, might also have a special focus upon some particular days; thus also, each day.

    Splitting hairs here? –Yes! But it is this kind of subtle difference and distinction that our language has the power to convey.

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

    • Join Date: Feb 2003
    • Posts: 16,551
    #5

    Re: each/every

    Having read this entire thread, I agree that the first two sentences are the best choices.





Similar Threads

  1. each/every
    By dodgerfan2002 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-Jan-2005, 06:37

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

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