Monday, 28 May 2012


Image: Wikipedia via

We use ancient to talk about something very old, often dating from before the fall of the Western Roman Empire:

There are ancient stones at Stonehenge.

It is very offensive to call a person ancient!

You can use old to talk about people and things:

an old man; an old building

You can also use old to talk about something that is not new:

My old computer doesn't work any more so I am going to buy a new one.

It is nicer to refer to people as elderly:

an elderly man

The term the elderly is often used as a collective noun to talk about older people as a group:

day centres for the elderly

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