Near vs Long - What's the difference?

near | long |

As nouns the difference between near and long

is that near is the left side of a horse or of a team of horses pulling a carriage etc while long is hair; fur; coat.

As an adjective near

is physically close.

As an adverb near

is having a small intervening distance with regard to something.

As a preposition near

is close to, in close proximity to.

As a verb near

is to come closer to; to approach.




(en noun)
  • The left side of a horse or of a team of horses pulling a carriage etc.
  • Synonyms

    * near side


    * off side

    See also

    * nearside


  • Physically close.
  • * Dryden
  • He served great Hector, and was ever near , / Not with his trumpet only, but his spear.
  • Closely connected or related.
  • * Bible, Leviticus xviii. 12
  • She is thy father's near kinswoman.
  • Close to one's interests, affection, etc.; intimate; dear.
  • a near friend
  • Close to anything followed or imitated; not free, loose, or rambling.
  • a version near to the original
  • So as barely to avoid or pass injury or loss; close; narrow.
  • a near escape
  • (of an event) Approaching.
  • The end is near .
  • Approximate, almost.
  • The two words are near synonyms.
  • (dated) Next to the driver, when he is on foot; (US) on the left of an animal or a team.
  • the near''' ox; the '''near leg
  • (obsolete) Immediate; direct; close; short.
  • * Milton
  • the nearest way
  • (obsolete, slang) Stingy; parsimonious.
  • Antonyms

    * remote

    Derived terms

    * near abroad * near-death experience * near-Earth object * Near East * near infrared * near-minimal pair * near miss * near the knuckle * nearly * nearness


  • Having a small intervening distance with regard to something.
  • I'm near -sighted.
  • (colloquial) nearly
  • * 1666 Samuel Pepys Diary and Correspondence (1867)
  • ...he hears for certain that the Queen-Mother is about and hath near finished a peace with France....
  • * 1825 David Hume, Tobias George Smollett The History of England p. 263
  • Sir John Friend had very near completed a regiment of horse.
  • * 2003 Owen Parry Honor's Kingdom p. 365
  • Thinking about those pounds and pence, I near forgot my wound.
  • * 2004 Jimmy Buffett A Salty Piece of Land p. 315, p. 35
  • "I damn near forgot." He pulled an envelope from his jacket.
  • * 2006 Juliet Marillier The Dark Mirror p. 377
  • The fire was almost dead, the chamber near dark.

    Derived terms

    * nearsighted


    (English prepositions)
  • Close to, in close proximity to.
  • * 1820 , (Mary Shelley), :
  • He entered the inn, and asking for dinner, unbuckled his wallet, and sat down to rest himself near the door.
  • * , chapter=17
  • , title= The Mirror and the Lamp , passage=This time was most dreadful for Lilian. Thrown on her own resources and almost penniless, she maintained herself and paid the rent of a wretched room near the hospital by working as a charwoman, sempstress, anything.}}
  • * 1927 , , :
  • It shied, balked, and whinnied, and in the end he could do nothing but drive it into the yard while the men used their own strength to get the heavy wagon near enough the hayloft for convenient pitching.
  • * {{quote-magazine, date=2013-08-16, author= John Vidal
  • , volume=189, issue=10, page=8, magazine=(The Guardian Weekly) , title= Dams endanger ecology of Himalayas , passage=Most of the Himalayan rivers have been relatively untouched by dams near their sources. Now the two great Asian powers, India and China, are rushing to harness them as they cut through some of the world's deepest valleys.}}
  • Close to in time.
  • Usage notes
    Joan Maling (1983) shows that near'' is best analysed as an adjective with which the use of ''to'' is optional, rather than a preposition. It has the comparative and the superlative, and it can be followed by ''enough''. The use of ''to however is usually British.


    * far from


    (en verb)
  • To come closer to; to approach.
  • The ship nears the land.

    See also

    * (wikipedia) * para- * nigh


    * Joan Maling (1983), Transitive Adjectives: A Case of Categorial Reanalysis'', in F. Henry and B. Richards (eds.), ''Linguistic Categories: Auxiliaries and Related Puzzles , vol.1, pp. 253-289.





    (wikipedia long)

    Etymology 1

    From (etyl) long, lang, from (etyl) longe, long, .


  • Having much distance from one terminating point on an object or an area to another terminating point .
  • :
  • *
  • , title=(The Celebrity), chapter=5 , passage=We expressed our readiness, and in ten minutes were in the station wagon, rolling rapidly down the long drive, for it was then after nine. We passed on the way the van of the guests from Asquith.}}
  • *{{quote-book, year=1963, author=(Margery Allingham), title=(The China Governess)
  • , chapter=17 citation , passage=The face which emerged was not reassuring. […]. He was not a mongol but there was a deficiency of a sort there, and it was not made more pretty by a latter-day hair cut which involved eccentrically long elf-locks and oiled black curls.}}
  • Having great duration.
  • :
  • *{{quote-magazine, date=2013-07-20, volume=408, issue=8845, magazine=(The Economist)
  • , title= Out of the gloom , passage=[Rural solar plant] schemes are of little help to industry or other heavy users of electricity. Nor is solar power yet as cheap as the grid. For all that, the rapid arrival of electric light to Indian villages is long overdue. When the national grid suffers its next huge outage, as it did in July 2012 when hundreds of millions were left in the dark, look for specks of light in the villages.}}
  • Seemingly lasting a lot of time, because it is boring or tedious or tiring.
  • *1877 , (Anna Sewell), (Black Beauty), Chapter 23
  • *:What I suffered with that rein for four long months in my lady's carriage, it would be hard to describe, but I am quite sure that, had it lasted much longer, either my health or my temper would have given way.
  • *
  • , title=(The Celebrity), chapter=2 , passage=I had occasion […] to make a somewhat long business trip to Chicago, and on my return […] I found Farrar awaiting me in the railway station. He smiled his wonted fraction by way of greeting, […], and finally leading me to his buggy, turned and drove out of town. I was completely mystified at such an unusual proceeding.}}
  • Not short; tall.
  • *
  • *:The colonel and his sponsor made a queer contrast: Greystone [the sponsor] long and stringy, with a face that seemed as if a cold wind was eternally playing on it.
  • (label) Possessing or owning stocks, bonds, commodities or other financial instruments with the aim of benefiting of the expected rise in their value.
  • :
  • (label) Of a fielding position, close to the boundary (or closer to the boundary than the equivalent short position).
  • That land beyond the baseline (and therefore is out ).
  • :
  • (label) Occurring or coming after an extended interval; distant in time; far away.
  • *(Edmund Spenser) (c.1552–1599)
  • *:That we may us reserve both fresh and strong / Against the tournament, which is not long .
  • Usage notes
    * Wide'' is usually used instead of ''long when referring to a horizontal dimension (left to right). * Tall'' or ''high'' are usually used instead of ''long'' when referring to positive vertical dimension (upwards), and ''deep when referring to negative vertical dimension (downwards).
    * (having much distance from one point to another) deep (vertically downwards), extended, high (vertically upwards), lengthy, tall * (having great duration) extended, lengthy, prolonged
    * (having much distance from one point to another) low (vertically upwards), shallow (vertically upwards or downwards), short * (having great duration) brief, short * (finance) short
    Derived terms
    * * as the day is long * daylong, dayslong * long arm of the law * long game * long gun * longhand * long-haul * long paddock * long pig * long row to hoe * long shot * long vehicle * long-waisted * long white radish * the long and short * yearlong, yearslong


  • Over a great distance in space.
  • For a particular duration.
  • * {{quote-magazine, year=2013, month=May-June, author= David Van Tassel], [ Lee DeHaan
  • , title= Wild Plants to the Rescue , volume=101, issue=3, magazine=(American Scientist) , passage=Plant breeding is always a numbers game.
  • For a long duration.
  • * 1594 , (William Shakespeare), i 3
  • I stay too long : but here my father comes.
  • *{{quote-book, year=1922, author=(Michael Arlen), title= “Piracy”: A Romantic Chronicle of These Days, chapter=Ep./4/2
  • , passage=The world was awake to the 2nd of May, but Mayfair is not the world, and even the menials of Mayfair lie long abed.}}
  • *
  • Synonyms
    * (over a great distance) a long way, far * (for a long duration) a long time
    * (over a great distance) a short distance, a short way * (for a long duration) an instant, a minute, a moment, a second, a short time, not long
    See also
    * far * wide * broad


    (en noun)
  • (linguistics) A long vowel.
  • (programming) A long integer variable, twice the size of an int or a short and half of a long long.
  • A long is typically 64 bits in a 32-bit environment.
  • (finance) An entity with a long position in an asset.
  • Every uptick made the longs cheer.
  • (music) A note formerly used in music, one half the length of a large, twice that of a breve.
  • Verb

    (en verb)
  • (finance) To take a long position in.
  • *
  • See also
    * broad * wide

    Etymology 2

    From (etyl) longen, from (etyl) .


    (en verb)
  • To await, to aspire, to desire greatly (something to occur or to be true)
  • She longed for him to come back.
  • * 1922 , (Margery Williams), (The Velveteen Rabbit)
  • The Rabbit sighed. He thought it would be a long time before this magic called Real happened to him. He longed to become Real, to know what it felt like; and yet the idea of growing shabby and losing his eyes and whiskers was rather sad.
    Usage notes
    * This is a catenative verb that takes the to infinitive . See
    * (desire greatly) ache, yearn
    Derived terms
    * longing

    Etymology 3

    Aphetic form of (etyl) gelang; the verb later reinterpreted as an aphetic form of belong.


  • (archaic) On account of, because of.
  • * 1603 , (John Florio), translating Michel de Montaigne, Essays , II.8:
  • I am of opinion that in regard of these debauches and lewd actions, fathers may, in some sort, be blamed, and that it is only long of them.


    (en verb)
  • (archaic) To be appropriate to, to pertain or belong to.
  • * 1590 , (Edmund Spenser), The Faerie Queene , III.3:
  • A goodly Armour, and full rich aray, / Which long'd to Angela, the Saxon Queene, / All fretted round with gold, and goodly wel beseene.
  • * about 1591 , (William Shakespeare), The Taming of the Shrew , IV, 4:
  • Tis well, and hold your owne in any case / With such austeritie as longeth to a father.