Definition of any in English:

any

determiner & pronoun

  • 1usually with negative or in questions Used to refer to one or some of a thing or number of things, no matter how much or how many.

    as determiner ‘I don't have any choice’
    ‘do you have any tips to pass on?’
    as pronoun ‘someone asked him for a match, but Joe didn't have any’
    ‘you don't know any of my friends’
    • ‘We were not asked or given the choice about any of the changes to our contracts of employment.’
    • ‘Again, however, there is no provision for any of these matters to be met out of third party funds.’
    • ‘None of these people has shown us or referred us to any specific documents in support of the information.’
    • ‘He tiptoed around it, trying not to get any of the putrid matter slop onto his fluffy bunny slippers.’
    • ‘They said they could not see any purpose in referring the matter back to the board.’
    • ‘Whether or not it should be made available to everyone without any strictures is another matter.’
    • ‘Spink is keen to see any examples of similar notes and will offer a free valuation to anyone who has any.’
    • ‘It's important that you don't hold back any information, no matter how small you may think it is now.’
    • ‘Not that any of that matters, but if these guys mess up again, an awful lot of people are going to get mad.’
    • ‘Not like you had any choice about the matter, packed lunches were banned, so you had to cough up.’
    • ‘One in four of those questioned said they did not know nor had any view on the matter.’
    • ‘They are not making any comment on the matter and are awaiting the referee's report of the incident.’
    • ‘Unless there are any other matters than those which we can address in a memorandum.’
    • ‘We have not commented here on any of the other matters covered in the Griffiths report.’
    • ‘I don't want you to go, either, but it looks like we don't really have any choice in the matter.’
    • ‘If you've got any of your own tips, feel free to share in the comments section.’
    • ‘It is not known if the councils are planning to take any action in the matter at this stage.’
    • ‘In this case they've solved a problem without referring to any of their memories.’
    • ‘Have any of you got any hints and tips for me?’
    • ‘If there were any anomalies, no matter where they were marked, we would be challenging them.’
    some, a piece of, a part of, a bit of
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Anyone.
      ‘the city council ceased payments to any but the aged’
      • ‘He doubted any would stop him if they'd seen his coat of arms.’
      • ‘Those who do not register in time to participate in the player selection system shall be ineligible, with these exceptions -- any who were sick or injured or any who became new permanent residents of the community after the selection.’
      • ‘Buses will evacuate any who can't drive away.’
      • ‘It is not a term which would be used by any but cheese-makers.’
      • ‘And David said, Is there yet any that is left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan's sake?’
      • ‘Telling teachers they have to do more is not going to interest any but the most ardent and dedicated.’
      anyone, anybody
      View synonyms
  • 2Whichever of a specified class might be chosen.

    as determiner ‘these constellations are visible at any hour of the night’
    as pronoun ‘the illness may be due to any of several causes’
    • ‘The work ethic culture has resulted in men working longer hours than in any other European country.’
    • ‘It also expects to be a major beneficiary if any of the current proposals to extend pub hours are made law.’
    • ‘The ruling classes in any country never have at heart the best interests of their subjects.’
    • ‘The plug you see below the fitting is the only part of any of these that is visible, and even then is difficult to spot.’
    • ‘He said that any fool could bet on a busted flush in poker, or swear that black is white, but that isn't a classic lie.’
    • ‘Prior to this illegally parked vehicles were clamped at any hour of the day or night.’
    • ‘Mostly though he breaks up the sentences so any fool would know to read them.’
    • ‘Math always came easy to me, so I really don't ever have to pay attention in any math class.’
    • ‘She cringed, remembering how Sara had asked her to take notes in any of the classes she would be missing.’
    • ‘He is a world class player and any team would benefit from having him in the side.’
    • ‘Gentility and respectability are the last things people of any class wish to symbolise now.’
    • ‘Second, there is more material to be taught in any given class than there is time to teach it.’
    • ‘The Rolling Stones, the Who and Led Zeppelin were liable to drop in at any hour, day or night.’
    • ‘Boxing will be in for a treat if any of the class of 2004 show even a flash of their brilliance.’
    • ‘At the end of the year, more prefects were chosen from my class than from any other.’
    • ‘An hour spent with any of those people and you feel like clapping for joy, or asking if you can do it all again.’
    • ‘Officers have made more arrests for class A offences than any other county division.’
    • ‘At this stage you can whisk or stir in any chosen flavouring such as sweet chilli sauce.’
    • ‘She would always be the first one to raise a class discussion about any topic, in any class.’
    • ‘They'll be able to advise you on any parts of the class that are now unsuitable.’
    whichever, whichever comes to hand, no matter which, never mind which
    View synonyms

adverb

  • 1as submodifier, usually with negative or in questions At all; in some degree (used for emphasis)

    ‘he wasn't any good at basketball’
    ‘why look any further?’
    ‘no one would be any the wiser’
    • ‘A more superstitious premier might have resolved not to tempt fate any further.’
    • ‘If it had gone on any longer we may well not have lived to tell the tale.’
    • ‘He didn't grow any taller, but his messy red hair straightened out and became slightly more orange.’
    • ‘This, however, didn't make her feel any the better.’
    • ‘Ron said he decided to ring the Evening Press and place the advert before the rumour made it any further.’
    • ‘I find Europe so fascinating that I'd be quite happy if I never went any further again.’
    • ‘If it were to stretch any further they'd be rolling up their trousers and paddling in the icy North Sea.’
    • ‘Before we could go any further on the subject, he says he prefers to talk about art.’
    • ‘Richard chose not to take it any further, but at the back of his mind he knew always knew something was not quite right.’
    • ‘In less than a minute, they decide whether or not they want to take it any further.’
    • ‘He said often it was a lack of confidence or opportunity that stopped the young people going any further.’
    • ‘Luckily they don't have to scrape about any further as the survey is in again.’
    • ‘Before I go any further can I say that I am as guilty of this as many of you are out there.’
    • ‘Two of the lads, David and Neil, said no one was any the worse for their experience.’
    • ‘We wouldn't be any better a nation if the distillation process had never been discovered.’
    • ‘As such it should not be allowed to influence our public life any further.’
    • ‘We hope he has a good accountant and focuses mainly on what he is good at, in order not to confuse people any further.’
    • ‘The support bus picked me up along with all the others who were too exhausted to go any further.’
    • ‘I don't think any good can come from filing a lawsuit against the jury.’
    • ‘The third was due to start last week, but Customs indicated they would not be taking the case any further.’
    at all, in the least, to any extent, to some extent, somewhat, in any degree, to some degree
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1US informal At all (used alone, not qualifying another word)
      ‘I didn't hurt you any’
      • ‘At this point in his life we do not want him to be a part of it either, we don't want to confuse him any, as far as he is concerned I am his Dad.’
      • ‘He has a slight limp due to a healed injury to a front foreleg, but that sure doesn't hinder him any!’
      • ‘It didn't seem to hurt him any.’
      • ‘Yes he has hit into bad luck, and the new defensive approach hasn't helped him any.’
      • ‘She’s a tiny creature but I don’t think that should hinder her any.’

Usage

When used as a pronoun any can be used with either a singular or a plural verb, depending on the context: we needed more sugar but there wasn't any left (singular verb) or are any of the new videos available? (plural verb)

Phrases

  • any road

    • Anyway.

      ‘any road, I'm sure you'll make a go of it’
      ‘any road up, a good few folks turned up’
      • ‘But, any road, don't buy shoes - they'll never fit.’
      • ‘Any road, in Sports Personality of the Year, we the British public usually hit the nail on the head.’
      • ‘There'll be all this worry that he should be opening, but come 10.45 on Thursday, England'll be 2-2 and Vaughan'll be at the crease like an opener any road.’
      • ‘On occasion, he would add: ‘They're vermin any road up - rainbow trout, ah mean.’’
      • ‘But there was a flag up any road for something or other.’
  • any time (also anytime)

    • At whatever time.

      ‘she can come any time’
      • ‘I am writing to complain about people who light bonfires any time, day or night.’
      • ‘Federal registration could be granted anytime.’
      • ‘It's been scary knowing they were on the loose and could strike again, any time.’
      • ‘Kevin Hayes stood in front of Cusack any time he tried to take a quick puck-out.’
      • ‘They also freeze quite well so you can pull them out of your freezer and enjoy them any time.’
      • ‘The club has a library with a gymnasium where anyone can walk in any time to relax and unwind.’
      • ‘The centre presented Heather with a gold card allowing her to visit any time.’
      • ‘A full-back by the name of Larus Sigurdsson flattened him any time he went near the ball.’
      • ‘Gerald's new life is a testament to his independence, but he is able to return home any time he wishes.’
      • ‘Contestants can make their move any time, with sneaky surprise a distinct advantage.’
  • any time (or day or minute etc.) now

    • informal Very soon.

      ‘we'll get them back any day now’
      • ‘Seems like we ought to be hearing from her any time now.’
      • ‘We are expecting companies to start putting in bids any time now and the process will take between four to six weeks to complete.’
      • ‘‘It could be any time now,’ Faldo said, with his wife expecting their first child, his fourth, on August 2.’
      • ‘She said: ‘Work will start any time now on the nature reserve, which will protect the wildlife currently living in Northwick Road.’’
      • ‘Plus, she couldn't shake that feeling that they were going to get caught soon, that this fun would end, any day now.’
      • ‘‘All the calves are doing really well - and we're expecting another one any time now,’ said reserve manager Chris Lawrence.’
      • ‘Two new books are out on the subject, two others will be out any day now, and the Spitzer data will soon be in print.’
      • ‘Bobby Williamson, the man Hibs hope to unveil as Sauzee's successor any time now, had no managerial experience when he was asked to take over the reins at Kilmarnock in 1996.’
      • ‘My finger traced out his features as I suddenly became aware that any minute now, I would faint.’
      • ‘Actually, there are two more positions that should be posted any time now and I've been asked to apply for both, so there's even more opportunity for growth.’
      soon, very soon, in a second, in a minute, in a moment, in a trice, in a flash, shortly, any second, any minute, any minute now, in a short time, in an instant, in less than no time, in no time at all, in next to no time, before you know it, before long
      View synonyms
  • be not having any (of it)

    • informal Be uninterested or disagree.

      ‘I tried to make polite conversation, but he wasn't having any’
      • ‘My wife however, is not having any of it.’
      • ‘However, the girl was not having any of it she grabbed hold of Calsy's face and forced him to look at her.’
      • ‘Christie is not having any of it: ‘I hear that all the time, but I'm not the slightest bit alarmed on the road.’’
      • ‘He demanded money from the shopkeeper, who bravely picked up a piece of metal and told him he was not having any.’
      • ‘They must have seen its phony optimism plain, and, after four years of war, were not having any.’
      • ‘Anthony apologized, but she was not having any of it.’
      • ‘Lucy and Misty were fine all taking their tablets between two pieces of ham, but when it came to Eric he was not having any of it and the tablet rolled away.’
  • not just any —

    • A particular or special thing of its type rather than any ordinary one of that type.

      ‘he had an acting job at last, and not just any part, but the lead in a new film’
      • ‘She needed to get herself a bike, and not just any ordinary bike.’
      • ‘Now that I had the money, I wanted a real Harris tweed jacket, and not just any Harris tweed jacket but a thick one, with more tweed in it than other tweed jackets.’
      • ‘Yes, these prizes are not just any old give-aways you get in some newspapers, they are tailor-made for the discerning readers of this column.’
      • ‘Just wondering how some people will react to the news that Ellen DeGeneres has gotten a new gig, not just any job, mind you.’
      • ‘This is not just any job; it is what may well be the second most powerful position in the United States government.’
      • ‘And not just any fella; one with what is patently a made-up name.’
      • ‘He knew, that the fifth was a thief, not just any ordinary thief, but one who had more brains than the others of his guild.’
      • ‘Again, a music festival is not just any other ordinary event.’
      • ‘The new buildings are not just any old structures either.’
      • ‘It was yellow, and not just any yellow, but sinister yellow.’

Origin

Old English ǣnig (see one, -y), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch eenig and German einig.

Pronunciation

any

/ˈɛni/