28

any more requests

anymore requests

Are these two the same? It seems that "any more requests" is grammatically correct while "anymore requests" is not. Am I right? Why are they different?

25

anymore is used, when you compare the status quo to the status quo ante: Something that was does no longer apply to the status quo, but it was thus earlier.

For instance:

I can't take it anymore.

Previously, you didn't very much or it just didn't bother you. But now, it has become too much to bear, and you cannot continue like that any longer.

any more are two words, where you can take the meaning of each word quite literal and it refers to more of something than you currently have/want.

In a question:

Are there any more surprises

You would be wondering, if there are additional surprises - thereby implying that there were already some.

anymore requests

I can't think of an example where this would be grammatically correct.

any more requests

This is correct.

  • 1
    Any more in the sense you describe is a Negative Polarity Item. That's why its occurrence is limited. – John Lawler Mar 18 '15 at 21:23
13

As this NGram shows, the single-word form is a relatively recent innovation... .

If in doubt, put the space in. I can't think of any sentence where that would actually be considered incorrect by anyone. But as OP indicates, there are definitely contexts where most if not all native speakers would object to the single-word form.

I don't really think it makes much sense to claim different meanings for the two forms, but here's someone making a good stab at it.


EDIT: (Many years later! :)

I just found this site, which says Anymore means at the present time, any longer, or from now on, whereas Any more means anything or something additional or further.

They also say Anymore is not normally considered an actual word in UK English, which explains my earlier position. But older and wiser, I can see the point of the distinction...

1:) I have enough staff. I don't need to hire anymore. (continued hiring is unnecessary)
2:) I have enough staff. I don't need to hire any more. (more staff are unnecessary)

  • 1
    +1, very nice ngram; note etymonline says: "one-word form by 1877" – Unreason Jun 23 '11 at 7:48
  • 4
    I don't think an nGram is relevant here: both of these are valid expressions, they just mean completely different things. – Marthaª Jun 23 '11 at 22:18
  • 3
    If you look at the actual uses of any more before 1960, a substantial fraction of them would be spelled anymore today. I believe the Ngram is actually telling us something, even though the one-word anymore has been around since the late 1800s. – Peter Shor Jun 30 '11 at 1:08
  • 1
    I think some people would like to tease out one very restricted meaning (something like hereafter/henceforth) and say that's the single-word version. I included a link to an attempted differentiation, but at the end of the day I don't buy the idea that only the single-word form is valid in certain contexts. I think the NGram is telling us something though - that an increasing number of people lately are moving in that direction. – FumbleFingers Jul 1 '11 at 1:18
  • 1
    If you type “I can’t take it any more.” into Microsoft Word, it says “Possible Word Choice Error” and suggests “anymore”. (I ignore the suggestion and leave it as two words.) – Scott Nov 13 '13 at 23:51
4

I wonder if it could be a US x UK issue. I have always learnt and used 'any more' (two words) in all contexts, and come from a British family unit, attending a British School. So we would have: John doesn't live here any more (UK) John doesn't live here anymore (US)

  • 1
    Yes, I believe this is a US / UK difference. I've never seen any Brit use the one-word form "anymore" (except for when MS Word's grammar checker has "corrected" it, IMHO incorrectly). – AlexC Sep 2 '15 at 16:37
3

They are very similar, but there is one difference:

Are there any more guests coming? The boat can't stand the weight anymore.

Any more is used to mean "additional", while anymore means 'any longer'

As you can see, there are instances when any more needs to be used to clarify from anymore.

1

You are right, the second example, "anymore requests" is incorrect because anymore is an adverb. According to Dictionary.com, anymore carries a negative connotation, too, and also can mean "nowadays" in a non-negative way. I have heard it used that way here in SE USA.

For the negative connotation see also: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THtX7H6ZJi8

  • But "any more" is also an adverb - en.wiktionary.org/wiki/any_more – Peter Mortensen Jun 23 '11 at 14:13
  • @Peter Mortensen, that is right, but in the first example it is only "any" that is the adverb (modifying "more" which is an adjective modifying "requests"). – JeffSahol Jun 23 '11 at 14:18
1

According to Ginger Software's list of words that commonly cause confusion,

Any more

Definition:
adjective any (negative) + adverb (quantity) more; or additional spelling of anymore

Example: I don't need any more clothes.


Anymore

Definition:
no longer; (usually used with a negative)

Example: Alice doesn't live here anymore.

-1

The single word form doesn't enhance meaning or indeed add any value at all. It seems to be quite a recent Americanism that I certainly don't intend to add to my vocabulary, whatever Microsoft may say.

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