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Home Dialogue Grammar Some VS Any Speaking Speaking Exercise Usage Some VS Any: What's The Difference?

August 21, 2021

Some VS Any: What's The Difference?

Some VS Any
I
n this post, you are going to learn how to use "some" and "any" quantifiers and how they are different. Read the dialogue below in which there are sentences with "some" and "any" quantifiers. Pay close attention to how "some" and "any" are used.
A. Example Dialogue
Raka is visiting Hadi and his mother, Mrs. Wira, after school. Here's their conversation:
Mrs. Wira:Do you have any homework today, Hadi?
Hadi:Oh, I forget. But I think we don't have any homework today. I'm glad. I don't like homework.
Mrs. Wira:I know you don't like it, but - are you sure you don't have any homework?
Raka:I think we have some homework, Hadi. Yes! We must write an English exercise!
Hadi:Oh, Raka!
Raka:Look - this is the exercise.
Hadi:Yes. I remember now.
Mrs. Wira:Well, you'd better start your homework now.
Hadi:Yes .... Oh, I don't have any paper.
Mrs. Wira:Here's some paper. Do you have a pen?
Hadi:Yes. Oh, my pen is out of ink, and I don't have any spare pens.
Mrs. Wira:Oh, dear! Raka, do you have a spare pen?
Raka:Yes, Mrs. Wira.
Mrs. Wira:Good. Please lend it to Hadi.
Raka:Here you are, Hadi.
Hadi:Thank you.
Mrs. Wira:Now, Hadi, you have some paper and a pen. Now you can write that exercise.
Hadi:There! That's finished now.
Mrs. Wira:Let me see it, Hadi. Hmmm, you have some mistakes here, I think.
Hadi:Do I? Where?
Mrs. Wira:Look at this sentence. That isn't correct. Can you improve it?
Hadi:Oh, yes! I remember the correct words now. I must change that sentence.
Mrs. Wira:Let me see your exercise, Raka.
Raka:Oh, Mrs. Wira, I think I have some mistakes too.
Mrs. Wira:No, no, Raka. This is very good. You don't have any mistakes in this exercise.
Hadi:Raka usually doesn't make any mistakes. But I always make some. Please look at this sentence again, Mom. Is it correct now?
Mrs. Wira:Yes, I think so, Hadi. I don't see any mistakes now.
Hadi:Good!
Mrs. Wira:Well, would you like something to drink now?
Hadi and Raka:Yes,please.
Mrs. Wira:Good. Let's have some lemonade. .... Oh, I don't have any lemonade, but we can have some tea!
B. Explanation
  1. "Some" is used in positive sentences. Examples:
    1. I'm going to buy some books.
    2. There's some ice in the fridge.
    3. We did some exercises.
  2. "Any" is used in negative sentences. Examples:
    1. I'm not going to buy any books.
    2. There isn't any ice in the fridge.
    3. We didn't do any exercises.
  3. Most questions (but not all) use "any". Examples:
    1. Is there any ice in the fridge?
    2. Do you have any money?
    3. Why didn't you do any exercises?
  4. When we make offers or requests, we normally use "some", not "any". Examples:
    1. Would you like some ice cream?
    2. Can I have some coffee, please?
    3. Can you lend me some money?
  5. We can use "some" and "any" without a noun. Examples:
    1. I didn't take any photographs, but Ann took some. (=some photographs)
    2. I've just made some coffee. Would you like some? (=some coffee)
    3. We don't have any sugar. I'm going to buy some this afternoon. (=some sugar)
To check your understanding about the difference between "some" and "any", proceed to the exercise page HERE.
Reference:
  • Murphy, Raymond Essential Grammar In Use. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998.
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