Neither vs. Nor

'Neither' and 'nor' are easily used by native speakers, but they are somehow hard for beginners. So, let us start learning about these two words.

"Neither" vs. "Nor" in the English Grammar

What Are Their Main Differences?

These two words are commonly used together, with 'nor' usually following 'neither.' The main difference between 'neither' and 'nor' is their grammatical function. However, we will take a look at it closely. Now let us see how they work.

Difference

Grammatical Functions

  • 'Neither':

can have different grammatical functions as follows:

  1. as a determiner
  2. as a pronoun
  3. as an adverb
  4. as a conjunction
  • 'Nor':

comes before a set of things or actions that are rarely possible to be involved or to happen. It usually follows 'neither.'

  1. as a conjunction

Neither Tom nor his girlfriend tried to make their relationship work.

They neither end nor continued their friendship.

Nor Can Be Used with a Set of Words

It is said that 'neither' and 'nor' are used before only one noun. But you can name a set of words at the end of a clause with 'neither' and 'nor,' if you repeat 'nor' before every single word.

He likes neither fish nor shrimps nor crabs.

They accepted neither my friend nor her boyfriend nor her mother to enter the fair.

Do They Rely on Each Other?

'Neither' and 'nor' as conjunctions have different rules. 'Neither' can be used on its own, while 'nor' rely on the existence of 'neither,' because it follows neither.

I wanted neither doll. (Not "I wanted nor doll.")

They looked for neither the girl nor the boy. (Not "They looked for nor the girl nor the boy.")

Similarities

Grammatical Functions

Both 'neither' and 'nor' can be conjunctions.

Neither and Nor as Synonyms

'Nor' can mean exactly the same as 'neither,' and it can be replaced by it.

"I hate egg plants." "Nor do I." = "Neither do I."

What They mean

'Neither' and 'nor' are used in a negative sense to show that either option is not chosen; for example, The man neither got married 'nor' stayed single.

The man neither got married nor stayed single.

She wanted neither to take a bath nor to sleep.

How They Are Used

'Neither' and 'nor' both can be used before one noun, and in standard English, they cannot be used before a set of things.On the contrary, 'nor' has a special grammar rule makes it an exception which we have discussed in the article.

He will miss neither his dad nor his mom because they were cruel to him.

I can accept neither your present nor your marriage proposal.

Neither and Nor Are Parallels

'Neither' and 'nor' should agree with what is used after them. For example, if there is a noun after 'neither,' 'nor' must be followed by a noun or if 'neither' is used with a verb phrase we must have a verb phrase after 'nor.'

She cook neither dinner nor cook lunch. (Correct answer → "She neither cook dinner nor cook lunch.")

Here in this example, 'dinner' is a noun while cook is a verb by converting the place of 'neither' before the main verb we can have a correct sentence.

Samuel drank neither tea nor drank coffee. (Correct answer → "Samuel drank neither tea nor coffee.")

The Difference between 'Nor' and 'Or'

We can use 'nor' in a sentence if the second disjunctive in a negative sentence is a verb clause. We use 'or' in a sentence if the second alternative in a negative sentence is an adjective, adverb, and a noun. 'Nor' seems a little informal, but 'or' seems formal. 'Nor' is used only for one word, while 'or' is used to show connections between more words.

Comments

  • linkedin
  • linkedin
  • facebook
  • facebook
  • email

You might also like

Either vs. Too

You might have seen these two commonly-used words a lot. Each of them has its uses, similarities, and differences.

Either vs. Any

When to use 'any' instead of 'either'? That’s a common question asked by English learners. To know the answer follow the article.

Neither vs. Nither

It's possible to never encounter 'nither' in the daily English context. But, if you want to know the difference between them, let us start as soon as possible.

Neither vs. None

Generally, these two words have many similarities and slight differences. In this lesson, we will learn them all.

Neither vs. Nether

Actually, ‘neither’ and ‘nether’ are really easy to distinguish. However, since they are really close in their spelling, they cause confusion. Click here.

Neither vs. Both

It is actually very important to know the difference between these two words. We will learn all about them in this lesson.

Download LanGeek app for free