| #3 (permalink) Thu Feb 09, 2006 6:34 am Something vs. anything
Any- means one, some, every, or all without differentiation.
Some- means an unspecified number or quantity.
The speaker in the example sentence wishes to indicate an unspecified task for tomorrow, so only the some- form (something) will work here.
Any- is not limited to negative and interrogative statements, nor is some- limited to affirmatives; it depends on the intent. They do, however, often appear in those kinds of sentences because of the meaning conveyed. These sentences are correct:
If there is anything you want, please ask me. (neutral)
If there is something you want, please ask me. (speaker thinks there may be a wanted item)
Is there anything you want? (neutral)
Is there something you want? (speaker thinks there may be a wanted item)
That isn't something I would tell a stranger. (from a 'finite' collection of secrets)
That isn't anything I would tell a stranger. (from an 'infinite' collection of secrets)
Native English teacher at Mister Micawber's
Joined: 17 Jul 2005