Anymore or Any More?

September 5, 2011

in Writing Style

This is one of those words that makes you question your writing skills every now and again. Does it look right? Should it be anymore or any more? Let’s find out.

Firstly, consider that many dictionaries see this as two ways of spelling the same word. Some scholars, on the other hand, say that “anymore” is not a word but a misspelling. That said, broadly speaking, in modern day writing, there is a recognized distinction between the two.

The Difference between Anymore and Any More

“Anymore is an adverb meaning “any longer” or “nowadays”, for example, “I don’t work there anymore.” Any more can be used as adverb plus adjective, for example, “I don’t want any more dessert, thank you,” or as adjective plus noun, for example, “I don’t want any more”. 

To better clarify this, here is a sentence using both versions: “I don’t go running anymore because I don’t need to lose any more calories.

American English Usage

The adverb “anymore” is used in the negative sense in standard American English, as in “I don’t run anymore.” You will also see it used in the positive, as follows, “Have you got any more of those sweets?”

The trick to remembering which one to use is to consider the words “longer” and nowadays.” So if I were asking a person for sweets i would say, “Have you got any more sweets?” And if I were telling a person that I was no longer with my girlfriend I would say, “We aren’t together anymore.”

Without wanting to confuse you, I need to add this in. This is one of those writing examples where you will hear contradictory opinions on usage. And in truth, whether you use anymore or any more, you will be able to find sufficient evidence to substantiate your usage.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Oatmeal Hunching March 23, 2012 at 9:04 am

Anymore is not a word! It is not an adverb, nor an Americanism, merely a mistake! Use it and appear ignorant to your reader…

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Zorg. June 27, 2014 at 5:08 am

I’m most definitely on board with this. That’s how I’ve always tried to use it when writing. Words such as everyday-and every day, is an perfect example of what this article describes. The adjective everyday, ‘pertaining to every day, ordinary,’ is correctly spelled as one word ( : carrying out their everyday activities), but the adverbial phrase every day, meaning ‘each day,’ is always spelled as two words ( : it rained every day).

It is ignorant it to remain unaware the obvious. One cannot overlook the significant evolution of words and their meaning that took place in order to shape the language we have today. Many words we use had pivotal changes in their definition along the way. Some words are the complete opposite to their original meaning. And let’s not forget that many well known authors of the past have used fictional words in their writings that were readily excepted and have become part of the language proper. The word “anymore” is already in common use and will not simply disappear. It will eventually become proper english.

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