Whither vs Either - What's the difference?

whither | either |

As adverbs the difference between whither and either

is that whither is (literary|or|archaic) to which place while either is as well.

As a verb whither

is (intransitive|obsolete|dialectal) to wuther.

As a determiner either is

each of two.

As a pronoun either is

(obsolete) both, each of two or more.

As a conjunction either is

introduces the first of two options, the second of which is introduced by "or".




  • (literary, or, archaic) To which place.
  • * 1918 , , Mirado Modern Classics, paperback edition, page 8
  • The wagon jolted on, carrying me I knew not whither .
  • *
  • *
  • * 1885 , , Penguin Red Classics, paperback edition, page 24
  • And with the same grave countenance he hurried through his breakfast and drove to the police station, whither the body had been carried.

    Usage notes

    * This word is unusual in modern usage; where is much more common. It is more often encountered in older works, or when used poetically. * Do not confuse with whether'' or ''wither .

    Derived terms

    * anywhither * nowhither * whitherward * whitherever


    * whereto


    * whence


    (en verb)
  • (intransitive, obsolete, dialectal) To wuther.
  • English interrogative adverbs



    Usage notes

    In the UK the first pronunciation is generally used more in southern England, while the latter is more usual in northern England. However, this is an oversimplification, and the pronunciation used varies by individual speaker and sometimes by situation. The second pronunciation is the most common in the United States.


    (en determiner)
  • Each of two.
  • * (John Milton) (1608-1674)
  • His flowing hair / In curls on either cheek played.
  • * 1936 , (Djuna Barnes), (Nightwood) , Faber & Faber 2007, page 31:
  • Her hands, long and beautiful, lay on either side of her face.
  • One or the other of two.
  • * {{quote-news, passage=You can't be a table and a chair. You're either a Jew or a gentile.
  • , quotee=(Jackie Mason), year=2006, date=December 5, work=USA Today , title= Mason drops lawsuit vs. Jews for Jesus}}
  • (coordinating)
  • * {{quote-book, year=1893, author=(Walter Besant), title= The Ivory Gate, chapter=Prologue
  • , passage=Thus, when he drew up instructions in lawyer language


    * (one or the other) * (each of two) both, each


    (English Pronouns)
  • (obsolete) Both, each of two or more.
  • * , Bk.VII:
  • Than ayther departed to theire tentis and made hem redy to horsebacke as they thought beste.
  • * (Francis Bacon) (1561-1626)
  • Scarce a palm of ground could be gotten by either of the three.
  • * , III.i:
  • And either vowd with all their power and wit, / To let not others honour be defaste.
  • * (1809-1894)
  • There have been three talkers in Great British, either of whom would illustrate what I say about dogmatists.
  • One or other of two people or things.
  • * 2013 , Daniel Taylor, Danny Welbeck leads England's rout of Moldova but hit by Ukraine ban , The Guardian, 6 September:
  • Hodgson may now have to bring in James Milner on the left and, on that basis, a certain amount of gloss was taken off a night on which Welbeck scored twice but barely celebrated either before leaving the pitch angrily complaining to the Slovakian referee.


  • As well.
  • * {{quote-book, year=1959, author=(Georgette Heyer), title=(The Unknown Ajax), chapter=1
  • , passage=But Richmond

    Usage notes

    either is sometimes used, especially in North American English, where neither would be more traditionally accurate: "I'm not hungry." "Me either."


    * neither * too


    (English Conjunctions)
  • Introduces the first of two options, the second of which is introduced by "or".
  • Either you eat your dinner or you go to your room.

    Usage notes

    * When there are more than two alternatives, "any" is used instead.

    See also

    * neither * nor * or