Unit 58: BOTH/ EITHER/ NEITHER
We can use these words in noun phrases. We use them when we are talking about exactly two (not one and not more than two). Both is plural (Both dishes are delicious); either and neither are singular (Neither of them has onions).
* AND *
There were dishes piled up on both sides of the counter.
I have two jobs. Both of them are in restaurants.
* OR *
There was no space to pile dishes on either side of the sink.
I've got two jobs, but I don't really like either of them.
NOT * and NOT *
Neither brand of dish soap seems to get the dishes clean.
Neither of my paycheques have been deposited yet.
With and, or and norTo show clearly that two things are the same:
Both the pizza place and the coffee shop have excellent service.
(The pizza place has excellent service and the coffee shop has excellent service.)
Either the pizza place or the coffee shop will be open tonight.
(The pizza place will be open tonight, or the coffee shop; they both won't be open.)
Neither the pizza place nor the coffee shop has ever turned a customer away.
(The pizza place has never turned a customer away and the coffee shop has never turned a customer away.)
NOTICE: In speaking only, we often use a plural verb with neither.
Neither of the restaurants are open yet.
Neither the pizza place nor the coffee shop has ever been open on a Sunday.