View Full Version : toward and towards

07-03-2006, 12:15 AM
Can anyone make a clear distinction between when you should use toward and when towards? As an example: We went toward town or We went towards town? Puma

07-03-2006, 01:24 AM
"Toward" (no S) is preferred in American usage, and "towards" (with S) is preferred in UK usage. They should not both be used by a single author, unless perhaps it's in dialogue.


Silver King
07-03-2006, 03:21 AM
Would the same go for "backward" and "forward" and "downward" and "upward?" I always write them with the "s" the first time, as that's how I hear it, but then change them back in the final telling.

I've never heard anyone say, "Hey, you're working A$$ backward." The "s" is usually always included in dialogue. And I've had this said to me many times.

07-03-2006, 04:42 AM
Ya' know, I wasn't absolutely sure about all the other 'wards,' and I had to look them up. It appears that without-S is the preferred American version, at least (since I looked it up in a Webster's), but the with-s is acceptable.

It's probably easiest to remember them all as without-S and be consistent that way.


Sandi LeFaucheur
07-03-2006, 04:53 AM
The Collins dictionary (English) indicates that with an s is the standard form, without is the variant. So, in England, use the s. In US, don't. Not sure what to do in Canada, because we're betwixt and between. But hey, we can get along with everyone! :)