anybody

 , anyone, anything, anyway, anywhere. Anything and anywhere are always one word. The others are normally one word except when the emphasis is on the second element (e.g., "He received three job offers, but any one would have suited him"). Anybody and anyone are singular and should be followed by singular pronouns and verbs. A common fault - so common, in fact, that some no longer consider it a fault - is seen here: "Anyone can relax so long as they don’t care whether they or anyone else ever actually gets anything done." The problem, clearly, is that a plural pronoun ("they") is being attached to a singular verb ("gets"). Such constructions may in fact be fully defensible, at least some of the time, though you should at least know why you are breaking a rule when you break it.

Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Anybody — A ny*bod*y, n. 1. Any one out of an indefinite number of persons; anyone; any person. [1913 Webster] His Majesty could not keep any secret from anybody. Macaulay. [1913 Webster] 2. A person of consideration or standing. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • anybody — (n.) c.1300, ani bodi, from ANY (Cf. any) + BODY (Cf. body). One word form is attested by 1826. Phrase anybody s game (or race, etc.) is from 1840 …   Etymology dictionary

  • anybody — [ən′ēbäd΄ē, ən′ēbud΄ē] pron. any person; anyone n. pl. anybodies a person of some fame, importance, etc. [no one who was anybody missed the party] …   English World dictionary

  • anybody — index whoever Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • anybody — [n] one, some unspecified person or people all, any of, anyone, anyone at all, any person, a person, each and every one, everybody, everyone, masses, one, public, whole world; concept 417 …   New thesaurus

  • anybody — ► PRONOUN ▪ anyone …   English terms dictionary

  • anybody — /en ee bod ee, bud ee/, pron., n., pl. anybodies. pron. 1. any person. 2. anybody s guess, a matter of conjecture: It s anybody s guess why she quit. n. 3. a person of some importance: If you re anybody, you ll receive an invitation. [1250 1300;… …   Universalium

  • anybody — an•y•bod•y [[t]ˈɛn iˌbɒd i, ˌbʌd i[/t]] pron. n. pl. bod•ies 1) fun any person 2) a person of some importance: If you re anybody, you ll get an invitation[/ex] • Etymology: 1250–1300 usage: The pronoun anybody is always written as one word: Is… …   From formal English to slang

  • ANYBODY — n. & pron. 1 a a person, no matter who. b a person of any kind. c whatever person is chosen. 2 a person of importance (are you anybody?). Phrases and idioms: anybody s (of a contest) evenly balanced (it was anybody s game). anybody s guess see… …   Useful english dictionary

  • anybody — an|y|bod|y [ eni,badi ] pronoun *** anyone: Is there anybody who doesn t understand what to do? anybody else: I m not taking care of anybody else s children …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • anybody */*/*/ — UK [ˈenɪˌbɒdɪ] / US [ˈenɪˌbɑdɪ] pronoun anyone Is there anybody who doesn t understand what to do? anybody else: I m not looking after anybody else s children …   English dictionary

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