Here's one opinion that there is no difference in formality between somebody/someone and no difference in formality between anybody/anyone. Ditto for everybody/everyone.esme said:Edher, from my personal experience, I like to use 'anybody' in things like writing a college-level essay. I guess it really doesn't matter, but I do see 'anybody' as being a little more formal.
Pardon me. What gap? The material you have quoted refers to a gap in print only. It doesn't say anything about a gap between written and spoken usage.The two terms are interchangeable, so euphony governs theI would strongly suggest that this gap between written and spoken usage
choice in any given context. In practice, anyone appears in
print about three times as often as anybody.
Does frequency dictate register? That's news....evidences the fact that anyone is the formal usage.
To quote The Oxford Dictionary of American Usage and Style:The two terms are interchangeable, so euphony governs the[...]
choice in any given context.
Thank you, Cornfields, for more sources supporting the view that these terms are interchangeable.I have one more bit of advice to add from the Columbia Guide to Standard
Someone is not necessarily a more polished choice than somebody; use
whichever word makes the most effective, rhythmically satisfying sentence.
The earliest example of anyone as one word (rather than any one) is 1958. The 1711 example referred to in the quote from Fowler, below, is listed in the OED as two words, "any one".The pronouns anybody and anyone are interchangeable in most contexts ...
... the OED treats anybody as a main entry but merely subsumes anyone under [the entry for] any.
... from the Middle English period onward anybody was a fully fledged indefinite pronoun, whereas anyone does not appear until 1711.
It is quite otherwise with somebody and someone, which have been in constant parallel use since the beginning of the 14c. Both stand as main entries in the OED.
I can't tell, out of context. It may simply be refuting an unsubstantiated allegation.[...]
doesn't it imply (or is it simply refuting
a commonly held assumption) that anyone is the more formal sense? To quote:
"Someone is not necessarily a more polished choice than somebody"
True enough. They do so when they are correct and when they are not.I think it is fairly safe to say that academic sites (by and large) adopt an authoritative tone.
I certainly agree with the first sentence. Google shows about six times as many occurrences of "want to" as it finds for "wanna". On the other hand, more formal terms are often not present in the active or the passive vocabularies of many natives speakers, so that the formal alternative may appear in print with lesser frequency. Consider "height" at over a half billion citations, and "altitude" at a mere 48 million. With the right choice of synonyms and near synonyms, one could make the frequency argument go either way.Written language tends to be more formal than spoken. So, while I have not
been able to provide evidence of spoken frequency, I do think written frequency and
the frequency on academic sites is suggestive.
It's a small point in the context, but the choice between a and an is entirely a question of euphony.[...]
I like the example of a and an, but the
rules seem pretty clear on that point, so it is really a question of grammar
rather than euphony.
From a midwestern perspective, I agree!I will not argue with Oxford, but to my ears anybody sounds rather
awkward in polite speech. So, if "euphony governs the choice," I would
suggest (from the perspective of an east coast academic for what it is
worth) that anyone has a more pleasing sound.