Using "each" and "every"

Each is a way of seeing the members of a group as individuals, while every is a way of seeing a group as a series of members. These distributives can only be used with countable nouns. They are normally used with singular nouns, and are placed before the noun. In many cases, they are interchangeable.

  • Each child received a present.
  • Every child received a present.
  • I gave each plant some water.
  • I gave every plant some water.

Each can also be used with plural nouns and pronouns but must be followed by 'of'. Every cannot be used with plural nouns.

  • Each of the children received a present.
  • I gave each of the plants some water.
  • He told each of us our jobs.
  • I gave each of them a kiss.

Every can express different points in a series, especially with time expressions. Each works in the same way, but is less common.

  • Every morning John goes jogging.
  • This magazine is published every week.
  • I have my coffee here every day.
  • I go visit my mother each week.
  • Each Monday, he buys a kilo of apples.