Easily Confused Words: Anyone vs. Anymore

Anyone and anymore are easily confused words. I see anymore used instead of anyone frequently online.

The spell-check application of most word processing software programs would not catch a slip-up of these two words. Spell-check is looking for words that aren’t in its dictionary, and words that resemble words in its dictionary but are possibly spelled wrong. Spell-check isn’t perfect. It doesn’t know and can’t guess what word you wanted or what word you meant, it can only judge the words on the page. If you used words that are all spelled correctly, it gives you a pass anyway.

Autocorrect suggests words that start with the same letters. It suggests what word you may want to save time, but quite often, its suggestions are funny, not helpful.

Anyone is a pronoun. It is a generic term for individual people, whether the speaker is talking to them directly, or referring to them generally in conversation:

Directly: Does anyone have a pen I can borrow?

Generally: I don’t think anyone is interested in a sequel.

Anymore is an adverb. It is used when a speaker is talking about something that’s ended or done, whether that was intentional or not.

The following story uses both words correctly:

Agatha, once a popular socialite, found her agoraphobia crippling. She didn’t see anyone anymore, and was scared about doing so. 

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