It seems no one, except my dad, has any idea whether to say farther or further. Isn’t one only for distance? How about figurative usage? Oh what about if it is not figurative per se but is in reference to distance figuratively, then what? Hey, is farthermost a word? Farthermore as well? No? Enough!!
I usually hear people say further when they mean farther I think because further has a nicer ring to it, better assonance, and stands a better chance of making you look smarter than were you to say farther when you have no idea which is right. I think it’s time to start correcting each other’s grammar and switch to correcting grammar itself a little bit.
I just took a break from writing this masterpiece to ask my wife when one uses further and farther. I picked out a smart gal, but she could only say shakily, “Isn’t farther for distance?” That’s a start, but I was hoping for some more confidence. I asked her just to give me two sentences using each word and you know what she did? She changed the topic! Granted, she was frustrated and on tilt having failed to tell me the gist of 14th Amendment or offer even a fragment of the First Commandment. Fun times with me.
The world would, in my estimation, not be a better place were everyone to wake up tomorrow with the two words mastered, ain’t that right. Furthermore, farther sounds like father; further doesn’t sound like anything. Farther is categorically superfluous to society. So what do you say we ditch farther and roll only with further?
PS: Now I know what you’re thinking, “Enough of this nonsense, give us that leggy broad Megyn Kelly from Fox News!”