Posts

Word Confusion: Nevertheless vs Nonetheless

Dear Copy Bitch: Any thoughts on the use of nevertheless vs. nonetheless?

–Jay S., from an email

Answer: Your email made me pause, Jay (which doesn’t happen too often, let me tell you). I’ve always thought of these two words as being interchangeable. But I decided to research my assumptions because, believe it or not, The Copy Bitch has been wrong before (most notably when it comes to the men I choose to date, but I digress).

I started with Diana Hacker’s A Writer’s Reference (fifth edition). She has a great “word choice” section, but those two words don’t show up. So, I cozied up with Google. The selections I read in my Google search showed that most people tend to agree with my thinking. This is an interesting forum post that goes a little deeper into meaning and usage. I’d use these words sparingly, however, since they have (in my mind) a very formal tone (I prefer conversational tones unless there’s a really good reason to go all formal). I welcome others’ thoughts on this one.