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Farther vs Further


  • ‘Farther’ (adv) means ‘to a greater distance from something’.
  • ‘Further’ (adv) means ‘to a greater degree, extent, or distance; to a more advanced level’. ‘Further’ (adj) means ‘additional’.

What’s the difference between ‘farther’ and ‘further’?

  • These two are some of the most confusing words in English, and it’s easy to see why: they only differ by one letter and share the same meaning of ‘to a greater geographical distance’.
  • What sets them apart is that while ‘farther’ is almost always used in the literal sense (i.e. a physical distance), ‘further’ is also commonly used in a figurative sense of a metaphorical distance. This makes ‘further’ much more versatile, and therefore more frequent in academic texts.
  • Both ‘farther’ and ‘further’ work as adjectives. Here, both also convey the notion of physical distance (e.g. a farther/further point in the horizon) while ‘further’ can also mean ‘additional’ (e.g. further research).
  • ‘Further’ is also a verb meaning ‘promote’, as in ‘further your career’.

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How they’re used

Example sentences with ‘farther’

  • Large birds were found to travel farther in homogeneous environments.
  • It is unclear whether walking faster or farther is more important for recovery.

Example sentences with ‘further’

  • We will explore this issue further in the next chapter.
  • Further studies are needed to confirm our findings.