Each vs. Every | Class 10 English Grammar

Each is a determiner. It is used before a singular noun.

  • Each new day is different.

Each and each of

We use each of before a pronoun or a noun with a determiner (the, this, my, your). Note that we use object pronouns (them, us etc.) after each of. The noun or pronoun is plural.

  • They gave each of their four sons a watch.
  • Each of the four boys was given a gift.

The verb after each of is usually singular, but it can be plural in an informal style.

  • Each of us has problems. (More formal)
  • Each of us have problems. (More informal)

With verb

When each refers to the subject, it can go with a verb in mid-position. It is put after auxiliary verbs and before other verbs. When there are two auxiliary verbs, each usually goes after the first.

Note that these meanings can also be expressed by using the structure each (of) + noun/pronoun.

  • The four boys each received a new watch. (= Each of the four boys received a new watch.)
  • They have each been told. (= Each of them have been told.)

Position with object

Each can be put after an object as part of a larger structure.

  • She kissed them each on the forehead. (= She kissed each of them on the forehead.)
  • She sent them each a present. (= She sent each of them a present.)

Each and every

Each is used to talk about two or more things. Every is used to talk about three or more things. They are both used with singular nouns.

  • Each/every boy in the class passed the test. (NOT Each/every boys —)
  • She had a child holding on to each hand. (NOT — every hand.)

Each refers to everyone of a group taken separately or individually. Every refers to all or each one of a group without exception.

  • Each book on that shelf belongs to my grandfather.
  • I have read every book on that shelf.
  • Every boy in the class passed the test.
  • The boys each received a gift.

Each other and one another

In modern English, each other and one another are normally used in the same way.

  • We see each other/one another everyday. (= Each of us sees the other everyday.)
  • They don’t like each other/one another.

Both expressions have possessive forms.

  • They sat for hours listening to each other’s/one another’s tales.

Cases where each other is not used

Note that we do not use each other after meet, marry and similar.

  • They met in 1995. (NOT They met each other in 1995.)
  • They married in 1997. (NOT They married each other in 1997.)

Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I am Manjusha. This is my blog where I give English grammar lessons and worksheets.

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