Monday Muddle: any more, anymore

Monday Muddle: any more: (determiner/quantifier) indicates an indefinite amount. Used in questions asking about quantity. Used in negative statements to indicate there is no more of something. Examples: Do you have any more cake? I don't have any more cake. anymore: (adverb) any longer Example: You have had enough, so don't ask me for cake anymore.

It’s always nice to be correct, but sometimes it is important to avoid confusion and unwanted consequences. “I can’t love you anymore” does not mean the same thing as “I can’t love you any more”. (If you are saying that verbally rather than in writing, you might want to use different words to express your feelings.)

Remember that “any more” as two words relates to quantity, and “anymore” as one word relates to time.

“Any more” (as two words) is used in the same way in negative statements as “some more” (also two words, but seldom confused as one) is used in positive statements. Example: I want some more cake.

“Any more” always comes before a noun, although sometimes the noun is understood without being stated. Example: Would you like more cake? Yes, but I don’t need any more. It is understood from the question that what you don’t need any more of is cake.

“Anymore” always relates to a verb, indicating there is something that you don’t do any longer. Example: I’m on a diet, so I don’t eat cake anymore.

If you can substitute the words any longer, without changing the meaning, use one word. If you still aren’t sure which to use, use two words, because some people (primarily British) still accept the two-word version as correct for both meanings.