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Thread: Farther = more distant, further = to a greater extent?

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    Farther = more distant, further = to a greater extent?

    Ok fellow foreros........
    Once again my sister and I are discussing words... we are confused with farther and further...neither one of us can make a clear distinction.
    I looked in OED and this is what I get:
    farther = more distant / further = to a greater extent; moreover; see usage on farther.

    Are these two synonyms or what? To me it looks like a AE/BE difference. Can someone please elaborate?

    Thanks a lot

    Sweet T.
    Il Riso è La Migliore Medicina!!!

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    For me, the theoretical difference is that "farther" refers to actual distance and "further" to everything else, but in practice there is absolutely no difference between the two. (I guess "further" in the sense of "furthermore" can't be replaced by "farther", but I don't use it to mean that anyway).

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    I agree with Remosfan. I use both words at my whim. There are many distinctions between words in English that are completely ignored.

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    So then basically I can use either one interchangeably..... without fear of misuse??

    Sweet T.
    Il Riso è La Migliore Medicina!!!

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Longman dictionary says;

    When you are talking or writing about real places and distance you can use either farther, farthest or further, furthest
    e.g. farther/further down the road. /What's the farthest/furthest distance you've ever run?

    Further (but not farther) is also used with the meaning 'more', 'extra', 'additional' etc.
    e.g. A college of furher education. / For futher information (not farther) write to the ....
    Please correct me!

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    Re: Farther vs Further


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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Quote Originally Posted by CBFelix
    Longman dictionary says;

    When you are talking or writing about real places and distance you can use either farther, farthest or further, furthest
    e.g. farther/further down the road. /What's the farthest/furthest distance you've ever run?

    Further (but not farther) is also used with the meaning 'more', 'extra', 'additional' etc.
    e.g. A college of furher education. / For futher information (not farther) write to the ....
    The last is very true, and that last bit is a difference in my speech too. But for me at least, farther is not limited to "real" distances. E.g. "Montreal went farther in the playoffs than Boston" is fine to me.

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    If you are dealing with someone like me, who had a huge harridan for an eighth grade English teacher, farther is used only for distance, and further for conceptual extent.

    I don't "correct" people who mix and match...it just doesn't matter enough. I like precision in language, when I'm not striving for vagueness, so I do distinguish between these words.


    cheers,
    Cuchu




    PS...just in case....


    harridan
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    1 harridan
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    That mod mods best that mods least...with apologies to Th. Jefferson.

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Yes, MZ. Most people don't know the difference; and those who do, such Cuchu, me, and the other respondents to this thread, can choose to follow the rules we were taught in school or not.
    Last edited by Eddie; 12th July 2005 at 10:25 PM.

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Hi!
    this topic has been (was?) discussed already here:
    http://forum.wordreference.com/showt...urther+farther
    By the way, do you pronounce the same way both words?
    Inara

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    I think I would only use further, myself.

    Do I pronounce both words the same way?
    If reading aloud, I would pronounce them slightly differently - rather as I would pronounce far and fur differently

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    I think farther is not only more widespread in AE than BE, but also in the north as opposed to the South. In fact to my ear, admittedly a little rusty in southrenisms, farther has a distinctly Yankee ring to it.

    Not only is further much preferred, the r is so unstressed you hear futther, as in "he thowed it futther'n a country mahl." The slight spoonerism I mentioned above really is the pronunciation you hear for Southern.

    One difference between farther and further that helps me sort things out a little is that the latter can also be used as a verb. You could "farther" something in the South, I guess, but you might end up paying chahld support.

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Quote Originally Posted by Inara
    Hi!
    this topic has been (was?) discussed already here:
    http://forum.wordreference.com/showt...urther+farther
    By the way, do you pronounce the same way both words?
    Inara
    Thanks Inara for that.... I did look to see if I was being repetitive or not.... how did I miss that?

    Sweet T.
    Il Riso è La Migliore Medicina!!!

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Quote Originally Posted by foxfirebrand
    You could "farther" something in the South, I guess, but you might end up paying chahld support.
    Linguistic patrimony?
    That mod mods best that mods least...with apologies to Th. Jefferson.

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    Re: Farther vs Further

    Thank you one and all for assisting me in my dilemma...... fresh coffee and pastries (not to be confused with pasties..... ) for all!!!

    Hugs,

    Sweet T.
    Il Riso è La Migliore Medicina!!!

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    Not to be confused?

    But I am confused-- pasties are pastries, aren't they?

    http://www.cornwall-online.co.uk/history/pasty.htm

    What else could you possibly have been talking about?

    [emoticon here, but they don't make one with a mock-nonplussed expression]

  17. #17
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    Re: Not to be confused?

    Futhamawh,

    you are welcome to copy and use any of these...

    Quote Originally Posted by foxfirebrand
    But I am confused-- pasties are pastries, aren't they?

    http://www.cornwall-online.co.uk/history/pasty.htm

    What else could you possibly have been talking about?

    [emoticon here, but they don't make one with a mock-nonplussed expression]
    Last edited by cuchuflete; 28th December 2006 at 4:40 PM.
    That mod mods best that mods least...with apologies to Th. Jefferson.

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    further...

    Hi,


    If someone wants to go to a certain place. May I say , go this way then it is further away or further up ?


    Thank you,

    Claude.

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    Re: further...

    I don't really understand your question...?

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    Re: further...

    If the person is trying to get from London to Bristol, the shortest way is to go direct. If someone asks if they should go to Bristol from London - by way of Birmingham, then you would say "That is a longer route" but it would not be "further away" - Bristol is always going to be the same distance from London no matter what route the traveller takes, it cannot be "further away".

    "Further away" can only be used when comparing how far two, or more, different places are from a third place. Manchester is close to Liverpool, Edinburgh is further away (from Liverpool than Manchester is).

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