Other than / Besides Is there the difference between "Other than" and "Besides"? If yes, please explain it to me
Feb 9, 2017 4:23 AM
Answers · 7
Hi Eunbin, How are you today ? The two items have similarities. We use them when we want to EXCLUDE something from a list, or to refer to something as the odd one out. Example: You managed to visit Serene Square and Benjamin Castle but did not manage to visit Mount Beautiful during your vacation. You may say: 1) Other than Mount Beautiful, I managed to visit Serene Square and Benjamin Castle. 2) Besides Mount Beautiful, I visited Serene Square and Benjamin Castle. "Besides" is used if you want to add more information or join items together. 3) I visited Serene Square besides Mount Beautiful. Notice that the meaning changes now. You went to all three places. Hope this helps you. Cheers, Lance
February 9, 2017
In negative sentences, they are exactly the same. "I don't like anyone other than John"=="I don't like anyone besides John"=="In the entire world, I only like one person, and that person is John." In positive sentences, "other than" has a narrower and more precise definition than "besides". "Other than John, I like everyone here"="I like everyone here except John. I hate John." "Besides John, I like everyone here" is ambiguous. It might mean the same thing as the "other than" sentence, or it might mean "I like John, and in addition I like everyone else here, too." In positive sentences, you need to use context to figure out which of these meanings is intended.
February 9, 2017
Hi Eunbin, While both can be used to mean "aside from," "other than" is limited to only this one usage while "besides" isn't. In other words, "other than" can mean "besides," but "besides" doesn't always mean "other than" because "besides" has more than one way of being used. Aside from "other than," "besides" can also be used to mean "in addition." For instance, this is a perfectly good sentence with "besides": "I would rather travel by train instead of flying because the distance is so short; besides, traveling by train means being able to see the scenery during the trip." Here, "other than" clearly doesn't work and cannot take the place of "besides." I hope this helps clarify some confusion. Please let me know if it doesn't.
February 9, 2017
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