Difference between among and between
Among vs Between:
English grammar is a difficult enough area for an English student already as it has got many confusing and grey areas to tackle and master in order to truly harness the beauty of the English language. The proper use of prepositions is one of those areas where one often gets lost in, trying to find the perfect moment to choose between that array of prepositions and utilize the most suitable one. The prepositions among and between are just two of those prepositions which sound extremely similar in meaning and which in turn add to the general confusion of things and yet, they differ largely when it comes to utilizing the two words correctly.
What is among?
The preposition ‘among’ is used when making a pick between several choices and this would generally involve more than two choices. For example,
It was necessary that the sweets were distributed among the three sisters.
I was required to make a choice from among the choices of vanilla, chocolate and strawberry.
‘Among’ also involves a choice that refers to a mass or a collective amount of people to whom precise distinction is not given.
I was lost among the choices of sweets that they had on offer.
From among my many friends, I was fond of Katie the most.
The preposition ‘among’ can also be used in reference to a sort of activity happening in a group.
Finding a friend among enemies can be quite comforting.
The commotion among the customers caused the store manager to finally look up from the newspaper that he was reading.
What is between?
The preposition ‘between’ can be used when referring to or making a choice between two entities. For example
I was forced to make a choice between strawberry and vanilla ice cream.
I was stuck between a man and a woman who were exchanging hostile glances constantly.
The use of ‘between’ can involve choosing between more than two distinct items as well. For example,
If I had to choose between Homer, Bart or Maggie, I’d pick Bart any day.
Therefore, one could say that the preposition ‘between’ has to be thus used when making a choice between two entities or when referring to more than two distinct entities.
What is the difference between between and among?
While both are prepositions used in reference to making choices, comparing or relating two or more items with each other, they are used in different contexts. For example, while ‘between’ is used to refer to mostly two things, ‘among’ is used to relate to several things. For example,
I was cramped in between the wall and the large suitcase that was shoved in from the other side.
Lets keep this among friends.
‘Between’ is also used in reference to more than two distinct, individual entities. They have their own distinctions whereas ‘among’ is used to relate to a mass or a collectivity. For example,
This secret should only be kept between you, me and John.
The knowledge of a scandal caused quite a commotion among the crowd that was gathered at the gate.
‘between’ is also builds a bridge in one to one relationships whereas ‘among’ buidls a bridge in collective relationships. For example,
The secret that was shared between the best friends was never revealed.
The king chose to wander among the poor during certain nights.
The words ‘among’ and ‘between’ can also be used in reference to locations. For example,
“The woman walked between the trees.
The woman walked among the trees’’ carry different meanings.