# Difference between 各 and 每?

I'm used to using 每 for every. However, 各 came up one day and appears to me to have the exactly same meaning. Is there a contextual difference between the two that I am missing or can they be swapped for each other? When should someone use 各 instead of 每?

## 3 Answers

The confusion is that they are both used when describing some property of the individual in a group, but with different intentions. You can see them as two kinds of "every" with different connotations.

• So according to you 每个人都有一个房间 means that the people as a group have a single (presumably very large) room? Commented Jan 18, 2014 at 1:27
• Nono. It means that everyone has a room. The 每 is used to indicate the sameness of the property of "has a room". Commented Jan 18, 2014 at 14:05
• Then you should edit the "describe the group as a whole" part of your explanation. Commented Jan 18, 2014 at 16:24
• I would go further and say that 各 generally enumerates each individual entity within a group individually, while 每 refers to every member of the group simultaneously. So while both can be used to talk about an entire group, 各 is more suitable when pointing out things that group members share which may have different attributes. +1 for your description and example though. "Each" vs "every" seems to sum it up. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 2:38

As @LadyP indicates, these two words have totally different meaning when used as adverb.

When used as 'every', sometimes, they are interchangable, e.g. (每/各)个学校. But:

• With some nouns, 每 can used directly without quantifier but 各 can't. E.g.:
• 每星期 -- good 各星期 -- weird
• But sometimes it's is reversed.
• 每单位 -- wrong 各单位 -- good
• In this case, 每 must be followed by quantifiers: 每个单位 -- good
• Generally speaking, 每 is usually followed by quantifier. Those not are exceptions.
• 每 can be followed by all kinds of quantifiers while 各 can be followed by limited quantifiers. In this sense, 每 is more widely used compared to 各. E.g.:
• 各件商品 -- wrong 每件商品 -- good
• 各个学校 -- good 每个学校 -- good
• TDOD
• (各/每)位领导 -- good, but used in different situations
• 充斥着各种声音 -- good 充斥着每种声音 -- doesn't make sense
• 各个大学之间的区别 -- hrm ... a little uneasy 每个大学之间的区别 -- doesn't make sense
• 每 can be followed by numeral while 各 never (when used as 'every').
• 每五人 -- good 各五人 -- good such in 男女各五人 but it does not mean 'every'

Another difference, beyond the subtleties of each/every, is that 每 can be used as an adverb meaning frequently or at every occasion, while 各 can be used as an adverb meaning separately or independently. 各 also appears in constructions such as 各V各的 (ex: 各唱各的) and 各V所B (ex: 各有所好).

Also note that the common word 各种 means various kinds, while 每种 would be every kind.