adrian is rad


former/ first, latter/ last

Filed under: — adrian @ 5:56 pm

More lessons from Adrian. Former/ latter is comparative between two objects. For example:

I like apples and grapes. I like the former because of the crispness while I like the latter because of the sweetness.

(I’m just making stuff here.)

First/ last point to the ends of a string of things. If you have three or more objects, you may think you sound smart using former/ latter, but it’s not right.

For example:

I like ladybugs, lightning bugs and butterflies. I have fond memories of the first [not former] from my younger days.

That makes for an a bit of an awkward sentence so perhaps “first of those” would be most appropriate.

One Response to “former/ first, latter/ last”

  1. mim Says:

    But really you shouldn’t use the former construct at all because it stops your readers in their tracks and forces them to reread the sentence you’re referring to. The latter construct is just silly.

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