Farther and further are two words that can confuse writers because they can be used as adverbs, adjectives, and verbs. But in some cases, they are completely different.
For example, farther is used when talking about physical distance that can be measured, while further is more often used to describe figurative distance.
Farther and further are words that are often confused. They both share the same root and mean a greater distance or extent, but farther is a literal word while further can be used figuratively. The best way to remember the difference is that farther has a physical component, meaning it’s a measurable distance. Further, on the other hand, can be a verb or an adjective. It can indicate that something is additional or to a greater extent, such as stating that she’d do anything to further her own plans.
Although many usage guides still recommend keeping farther reserved for a literal distance, the figurative use of further is growing in popularity. However, it’s important to keep the two terms separate in order to ensure that your writing is clear and concise. If you need help avoiding grammar mistakes, check out LanguageTool’s spelling and grammar checking tool! It’s the easiest way to correct your mistakes and improve your writing.
Farther and further are often confused because they look similar and sound similar, and they can both be used as an adverb or an adjective. Additionally, dictionaries and style guides often give them the same definitions.
However, writers should remember that farther is a word that indicates a greater distance in a literal sense, and it can be used to describe a physical or metaphorical distance. The word further, on the other hand, means a greater degree of something abstract, and it can be used to describe figurative or non-physical distance.
As such, the best way to distinguish them is by their spelling, and by knowing how they’re used in a sentence. Keeping this in mind can help prevent mistakes when writing or speaking, and it can also make sure that your meaning is clear to others. Other similar-sounding words that are often confused include use to vs. used to, all right vs. all right, and then vs. than.
When writing or speaking, it’s easy to mix up farther and further. The words look and sound similar, and they have slightly overlapping definitions. However, if you know the difference between the two, you can avoid embarrassing mistakes.
In general, farther refers to physical distance in a literal sense, whereas further can also be used figuratively. It’s not the biggest mistake to make, but it can be an issue if you are trying to convey a clear meaning.
If you’re unsure whether to use farther or further, it’s usually best to err on the side of caution and use farther. It’s a little less flexible than further, but it will prevent you from making an embarrassing mistake. For more grammar tips, check out our articles on other common misused word pairs like ensure vs. insure, alright vs. all right, and then vs. than. They can help you write better, more accurate content. Thanks for reading!
Few sets of words stump speakers and writers of American English more than farther and further. The problem stems from the fact that both can function as adverbs, adjectives, and verbs—and differ in each case depending on whether they’re talking about literal or figurative distance.
Most usage guides recommend keeping farther reserved for physical distance and further used for figurative progress, but there’s plenty of leeway in this area. If in doubt, a good rule of thumb is to consider whether the word you’re using is referring to something abstract or concrete.
The easiest way to remember the difference between farther and further is to recall that farther implies a quantifiable amount of space, while further does not. This may help you avoid using these words incorrectly in your writing. To make sure your writing is free of grammar errors, check your work with a spelling and grammar checker. Grammarly can spot mistakes that even expert writers might miss—and help you improve your writing.