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Different from vs. Different than


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You may have seen "different from" and you may have seen "different than."  Which is correct?  Are both correct? 

"Different from" is actually the correct form.  Thus you would say:

The books I bought today are different from the ones I bought last year.

They found the weather at the beach to be much different from the weather in the city.

The new styles are not much different from last year's styles.

Ideally it's best to use "different from" in all circumstances.  But there's been a development in recent years -- especially in American English -- to allow the use of "different than" in some circumstances. 

In particular, it's considered acceptable to use "different than" if it precedes a clause.

Here are a couple of examples.

Living in a high-rise apartment seems so different than living in a bungalow.

Working at the bank was different than what he expected it to be. 

But when in doubt use "different from" and you will be using correct grammar. :)

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'Different than' definitely seems to be common amongst Americans. In England people tend to say 'different to' or 'different from' although the latter is less common, despite the fact that it's actually correct!

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