1) Both
Both means two of two things.
I have two cats. I like both of them.


2) Neither
Neither means not one or the other of two things.
Neither of my cats is grey.
Remember to use a singular verb after neither.
Neither of the dogs are dangerous. => Neither of the dogs is


3) Either
Either means one or the other.
There are two cakes. Please have one. You can have either one.




1) You can use both, neither and either directly before a noun.
Both supermarkets are good.
Neither supermarket sells electrical goods.
We can go to either supermarket, I don’t mind.


2) Both, neither and either are often used with ‘of’. But you must always use a determiner (the, my, these, those, his etc) before the noun.


Both of children like chocolate cake. => Both of the children like chocolate cake.


However, you don’t have to use of with both.
Both of the children like chocolate cake.
Both children like chocolate cake.


3) You can use both, neither and either+ of + object pronoun (you, them, us).


Both of them wore white dresses. 
Neither of us was late. 
Have either of you got a pen?


4) You can use the three of them as paired conjunctions: Both ... and, either... or, neither... nor


Both ... and is a paired conjunctions. Paired conjunctions are used to express actions that two or more subjects take.  As 'both ... and' refers to two subjects, the plural form
of the verb is always used.




Both Alice and Janice attended USC.
Both Jim and Peter are attending the conference in New York this weekend.


a. Either / or - used in a sentence in the affirmative sense when referring to a
choice between two possibilities


              We can either eat now or after the show - it's up to you.


b. Neither / nor - used in a sentence in the negative sense when you want to say
that two or more things are not true


               Neither my mother nor my father went to university.


When using either/or and neither/nor, note the following rules:


1. If both elements are singular, then the verb is singular too.




·        Either the father or the mother has to attend the meeting . (father and mother are singular; so the verb has is singular too)


·      Neither Leila nor Nancy is going to write the report. (Leila and Nancy are singular; so the verb is is singular too)




2. However, if one of the elements is plural, then use a plural verb.


·        Either Sue or the girls are going to prepare dinner tonight. (the girls is plural; so the verb are is plural too)


·        Neither the teacher nor the students were in the classroom this morning. (the students is plural; so the verb were is plural too)




Not only … but also


We use not only X but also Y in formal contexts:


The war caused not only destruction and death but also generations of hatred between the two communities.


The car not only is economical but also feels good to drive.


This investigation is not only one that is continuing and worldwide but also one that we expect to continue for quite some time.


We can sometimes leave out also:


I identified with Denzel Washington not only as an actor but as a person.


To add emphasis, we can use not only at the beginning of a clause. When we do this, we invert the subject and the verb:


Not only was it raining all day at the wedding but also the band was late.


Not only will they paint the outside of the house but also the inside.


When there is no auxiliary verb or main verb be, we use do, does, did:

Not only did she forget my birthday, but she also didn’t even apologise for forgetting it.