What’s the difference between Neighbors and Neighbours? Are these words interchangeable, or do they mean different things?
About the word
A neighbor is a person living very near (mostly next door) to the speaker or the person who is referred to in a sentence. I
E.g. Our neighbors hosted a party last night.
A person or place that is there in relation to others next to it.
Eg. She chatted with her neighbor on the flight to Chicago.
A person who is in desperate need of your help or kindness is also regarded as your neighbor.
Eg. “Love thy neighbor as thy self.”
Neighbor as a verb:
When a place or object is near or next to another place or object, they neighbor each other.
Eg. The bakery neighbors my block.
The differences between “neighbor” and “neighbour” are: one is the American way of writing, and the other is the British way of writing. Americans write “neighbor” whereas British write “neighbour.”
As per the dictionary, the meaning of “neighbour” is:
“Someone who lives next to or near another person”;
“A place, a person, or a thing located near or adjacent to another”;
“A fellow human.”
What does “neighbor” mean? They are
They are the same words, they mean the same, and they sound the same. The only difference is in the way they are spelled. “Neighbour” is the spelling used in British English while “neighbor” is used in American English.
Neighbor or Neighbour Usage
The American Revolution chopped off a ‘u’ from the original word and resulted in a shorter version which is neighbor. The people living in America and addressing the American population in their writings must use these spellings without a ‘u’ in it.
The two neighborhoods have begun organizing a Marco Polo Day and an East Meets West Christmas Parade. (NY Times)
The original word neighbour is spelled with a ‘u’ after the third vowel and is preferred in all the English-speaking world (except America) including Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand, etc.
If you belong to any of these countries or your audience is from these countries you should probably use the original spellings with a ‘u’.
Revitalizing historic neighborhoods reduces the need to develop new land and costly new municipal infrastructure, a key objective of smart growth (The Star Phoenix Canada).
All the participles of neighbor can be written with or without the “u” so you don’t have to worry about that.
Whenever you have to use the word neighbor in your writings, you should consider your location, audience, and preference as the spellings differ in different regions.
One thing to make sure is that whichever neighbor you choose in your writing, you have to stick to it in the whole piece, you can’t go shifting from one to another.
The only difference between “neighbour” and “neighbor” is that “neighbor” is the American spelling and “neighbour” is the British spelling.