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Anything vs. Everything: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Published on January 13, 2024
Anything refers to any single item, fact, or possibility without specification. Everything means all items, facts, or possibilities collectively.
Anything vs. Everything

Key Differences

Anything implies an unspecified single element or possibility within a broader range. It's non-specific and open-ended. Everything, on the other hand, encompasses the whole spectrum of items, facts, or possibilities. It's all-encompassing and leaves no room for exclusions.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024
In usage, anything is often used in contexts of possibility or uncertainty. For instance, "Anything can happen." Everything, conversely, is used when referring to a complete set or entirety, such as "Everything is ready."
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024
Anything can suggest a choice among many options, indicating a lack of restriction. For example, "You can choose anything." In contrast, everything implies the inclusion of all options, leaving out none, as in "Everything on the menu is delicious."
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024
In questions, anything typically seeks an unspecified response, while everything is used to inquire about the totality of a situation. "Is there anything I can do?" differs from "Did you tell me everything?"
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024
In negative constructions, anything denotes the absence of even a single item or fact, whereas everything indicates the absence of all items or facts. "I know nothing about anything" vs. "I know everything about it."
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Scope

Unspecified single element or possibility
Totality of all elements or possibilities
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Usage

Indicative of possibility or choice
Refers to completeness or entirety
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Questions

Seeks an unspecified answer
Inquires about the complete situation
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Negation

Denotes absence of any item or fact
Implies absence of all items or facts
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Example

"Choose anything you like."
"Everything was perfect at the event."
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024
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Anything and Everything Definitions

Anything

Anything but ordinary.
Her performance was anything but mediocre.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Everything

Everything matters.
Everything in this room has a story.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Anything

Anything could be hidden there.
There could be anything in this box.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Everything

Everything is included.
Everything in the package was intact.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Anything

Anything else?
Would you like anything else?
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023
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Everything

Everything changed.
After the event, everything was different.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Anything

Choose anything.
You can have anything from the menu.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Everything

Everything looks good.
Everything about this plan seems perfect.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Anything

To any degree or extent; at all
They aren't anything like last year's team.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

(literally) All the things under discussion.
I checked the list again and everything is done.
Thank you for everything you've done for us.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

Something or someone of importance
"You had to be something to start with, and Jeremy never was anything" (Anne Tyler).
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

Many or most things.
I did everything today - washed the dishes, cut the lawn, did the laundry.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

Any object, act, state, event, or fact whatever; a thing of any kind; something or other.
I would not do it for anything.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

(colloquial) A state of well-being (from all parts of the whole).
She wasn't feeling well this morning but now everything is fine.
Since the company lost its best customer everything has gotten worse.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

(with “as” or “like”) Expressing an indefinite comparison.
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Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

(colloquial) Considerable effort.
It took everything in me to resist the temptation to skip work on my birthday.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

Someone or something of importance.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

(colloquial) The most important thing.
I can't believe I made it in time - timing is everything!
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

In any way, any extent or any degree.
That isn't anything like a car.
She's not anything like as strong as me.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

Whatever pertains to the subject under consideration; all things.
More wise, more learned, more just, more everything.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

Any object, act, state, event, or fact whatever; thing of any kind; something or other; aught; as, I would not do it for anything.
Did you ever know of anything so unlucky?
They do not know that anything is amiss with them.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Everything

Everything possible.
He did everything possible to win.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Anything

Expressing an indefinite comparison; - with as or like.
I fear your girl will grow as proud as anything.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

In any measure; anywise; at all.
Mine old good will and hearty affection towards you is not . . . anything at all quailed.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

A thing of any kind;
Do you have anything to declare?
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 13, 2023

Anything

Anything is possible.
With hard work, anything can be achieved.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Dec 19, 2023

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Is "anything" always singular?

Yes, "anything" is treated as singular in sentences.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Does "anything" imply a choice?

Often, "anything" suggests a choice among various options.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Is "everything" inclusive?

Yes, "everything" includes all things in a given context.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "everything" be used in questions?

Yes, it's used to inquire about the totality of a situation.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Does "everything" mean the same as "all"?

Generally, but "everything" is more comprehensive, covering a wider range.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Does "anything" indicate uncertainty?

Yes, it can suggest uncertainty or any number of possibilities.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "anything" be used in negative sentences?

Yes, "anything" is commonly used in negations.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Is "everything" always positive?

Not necessarily. "Everything" can be used in both positive and negative contexts.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Is "everything" used in exaggerations?

It can be, like saying "Everything went wrong."
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Does "anything" have a plural form?

No, "anything" is always singular.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "everything" be used for people?

Yes, "everything" can refer to all people in a group.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Is "anything" used in hypothetical situations?

Yes, it's often used to discuss possibilities.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Does "anything" imply more freedom of choice?

Generally, it suggests a wider range of choices.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Is "anything" less specific than "something"?

Yes, "anything" is more general and undefined.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Is "everything" comprehensive in descriptions?

Yes, it covers all aspects in descriptions.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Does "everything" include both tangible and intangible elements?

Yes, it encompasses both physical and abstract aspects.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "anything" be used for emphasis?

Yes, like in "Anything but that!"
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "everything" refer to a complete situation?

Yes, it often refers to the entire state of affairs.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "everything" be too general in some contexts?

Yes, sometimes it's too broad and lacks specificity.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

Can "anything" be used in formal contexts?

Yes, it's suitable for both formal and informal settings.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 13, 2024

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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