1. lameri

    lameri New Member

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    For ever vs. forever

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by lameri, May 9, 2011.

    Is there any difference between the two in American English?

    My sentence is: "That remained our joke for ever."

    Thanks.
     
  2. Jessica_312

    Jessica_312 New Member

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    I believe it's "forever", always one word.
     
  3. madhoca

    madhoca Contributor Contributor

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    In British English, both 'forever' and 'for ever' is accepted, but I don't think 'for ever' is used in the US. Logic being applied, you can't measure eternity as a length of time, so 'for ever' doesn't seem right to Americans I suppose.

    But there is a small nuance of meaning, in British English anyway, in that:
    'I will love you for ever' = 'I will love you for all time' and is fine poetically, or you can say:
    'I've been waiting for ever' = 'I've been waiting for a really long time'
    but
    'I will love you forever' is more like 'I will love you eternally' and
    'I've been waiting forever' ...just doesn't work in idiomatic British English.

    Oh, and Demis Roussos definitely sang 'for ever and ever and ever and ever you'll beeeeeeeeee my love.'
     
  4. MidnightPhoenix

    MidnightPhoenix New Member

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    Forever, is the way i spell it :)
     
  5. Sundae

    Sundae New Member

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    In that sense, there is a distinction and one would be more correct over another depending on the context of what the author is trying to say.

    Lol, now I'm trying to figure out if I do make the distinction in for ever vs. forever in my writing. I really don't know...

    I do know I make that distinction when I speak. If I mean 'for ever', there is a definite pause in my speech.

    I'm not sure if Americans really distinguish or not. I would assume as we do just as we distinguish other words like:

    a while vs. awhile

    or

    on to vs. onto

    Heh, I don't know.
     
  6. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    they're used separately in american english in this way:

    'for ever and ever'
    or
    'for ever and a day'

    otherwise, it's usually a single word...
     

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