Open Menu
Phonetics with M-E

Try mSpy Phone Tracker for Your Kid's Safety

Touch a word or the <play> button for sound
Click on a word or on the <play> button for sound
Click on a word or on the red <play> button for sound


- Basic use of  SOME / ANY
- SOME in questions
- ANY in affirmatives
- ANY or NO in negatives
- SOME with singulars (advanced)



ANY and NO in negative sentences
SOME used in questions
ANY in affirmative sentences
Level: Level: Easy

Some / Any / No - Special cases


countable singular

countable plural  some / x  
uncountable  some /x 

We use SOME in affirmative sentences and ANY in negative and interrogative sentences.

- I have some books at home
- I don't have any books at home
- Have you got any books at home?


SOME in questions  You use SOME in affirmatives and ANY in interrogatives and negatives, but you must use SOME in questions when you expect or encourage the answer "yes". In these cases, you use SOME because a negative answer is possible but it would surprise you.
you see your friend rubbing his eye:    - What’s wrong, have you got something in your eye?
a mother to her 10-year-old son:    - Can you buy some bread when you go to the shop?
For the same reason we also use SOME in questions for offerings and requests, because we are expecting (requests) or encouraging (offers) an affirmative answer:
- Would you like some coffee? (offering)
- Can I have some more sugar, please? (request)
ANY in affirmatives You can use ANY in an affirmative sentence (singular or plural) meaning "no matter which".
[ = cualquier]
- You can take any book you like, I've got many.  (you can take one book, no matter which one)
- You can take any books you like.  (you can take more than one book, no matter which ones)
- That exercise is very easy, any children here could answer that. (this boy, or that girl, it doesn't matter who you choose, they all know the answer)
- You don't need to go there at the weekend, you can go any day you want, it's always open.

  ANY in conditionals We usually use ANY after "if" even in affirmative sentences (but SOME may also be possible)
- If you see anything strange, tell me
- If you like any of these books, you can borrow it

ANY in negatives You can use NO instead of  NOT ANY to emphasize the negative idea.
- I don't need any money = I need no money
- There aren't any people here = There are no people here
- I don't have no friends here (this is not possible because it is a double negative: NOT + NO, and double negatives are not possible in standard English)

Notice that we usually make a negative sentence with NOT, but you can also use some other negative adverbs (never, without, rarely...), so the rule is the same, with negative adverbs we use ANY and we use NO with positive adverbs:

- I never see any children here (never - any)
- I always see no children here (no)
- They rarely read any books (rarely - any)
- They usually read no books (no)
- You can hardly say any words in French (hardly - any)
- You can almost say no words in French (no)
- We could do it without any problems (without - any)
- We could do it with no problems (no)


For advanced students

You can use SOME with a singular noun when you want to emphasize that you don’t know which person or thing that is. In this case we can use it even with proper nouns. We can consider it an emphatic form of the singular indefinite article A.
- Some man phoned, but didn’t leave his number
- Is there some problem?
- some John  has been looking for you
( in this case the usual translation is: "un tal / algún tipo de", or simply "un")

Notice the difference:
- Is there a problem? I'm simply asking, I think that maybe there is a problem.
- Are there any problems? I'm simply asking, I think that maybe there are some problems.
- There was some problem SOME with a singular noun = There was a problem but I have no idea what it was.
- Is there some problem? SOME with a singular noun = I have no idea what the problem may be.
- Are there some problems? SOME in interrogative sentences = I know there is a problem and I want you to tell me what, I expect the answer to be "yes".


<your ad here>

© Angel Castaño 2008 Salamanca / Poole - free videos to learn real English online || InfoPrivacyTerms of useContactAbout
This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read more