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ESL forum > Ask for help > elder and older    

elder and older



mimib21
Madagascar

elder and older
 
 Hi everyone,
 
Could you explain the meaning, the difference between elder and older, please? and for farther and further in comparative form?
I don īt know exactly the different use of them. 
Thank you very much in advance. 

13 Jan 2016      



almaz
United Kingdom

A good way of thinking about the difference between elder and older is that the former generally refers to people only, while the latter refers to both people and things. īElderī also has connotations of experience and respectability, as in elder statesman. 
 
As far as farther and further are concerned, it used to be the case that the former was used to "designate longitudinal distance" while the latter signified "quantity or degree" (Vizetelly, 1906), but farther is used less and less these days, particularly in its adjectival sense.
(Historical note: the forms originated from a comparative of forth, with farther being a later variant of further)
 
Hope this helps a wee bit.
 
Alex 

13 Jan 2016     



douglas
United States


In regards to further vs farther:

"...in so far as the [farther] forms are used at all, they are now more likely to occur in AmE than in BrE, though the distinction is not clear-cut."


"The ratios of farther to further are clearly in favor of further. Obviously Australia and the United Kingdom have no respect for American usage notes: they have almost eliminated farther altogether. It is especially interesting to note that the BBC corpus contains absolutely no cases of farther. "

This link provides a nice discussion of their use:
 
Cheers,
Douglas

14 Jan 2016     



almaz
United Kingdom

Couldnīt agree more, Douglas.  
 
By the way, that is an excellent blog by "Warsaw Will" (a fellow Scottish teacher currently working in Poland), who obviously does his research. Highly recommended. Many thanks for sharing the link 
 
Alex 

14 Jan 2016     



alien boy
Japan

Thanks for the link, Douglas, and the discussion, too fellas.
 
Cheers,
AB 

14 Jan 2016     



mimib21
Madagascar

Hi!
Thank you very much for your answer!
It helps. 

14 Jan 2016