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Former-Latter

Have you ever got­ten con­fused over the dif­fer­ences between “lat­ter” and “former”?

Here’s an exam­ple of how peo­ple use the two words: “I enjoy read­ing Entrepreneur and Inc, but pre­fer the lat­ter over the former.”

“Former” refers to the first of TWO per­sons or things.

Example: “This item is avail­able in wood and in metal, but I pre­fer the former.”(Wood: the first of two things)

“Latter” refers to the sec­ond of TWO per­sons or things.

Example: “Red and blue are pop­u­lar col­ors, but the lat­ter is more pop­u­lar.” (Blue: the sec­ond of two persons)

Here’s a trick to remem­ber the dif­fer­ences: the word “for­mer” means “first” and both begin with the let­ter “f.” Once you know that for­mer is first, the lat­ter part is easy.

“Latter” and “last” both begin with an “l.”

Former: first
Latter: last

This only works when there are two per­sons or things under dis­cus­sion. But that’s another story for another time!

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