every one of two or more considered individually or one by one: each stone in a building; a hallway with a door at each end.
every one individually; each one: Each had a different solution to the problem.
to, from, or for each; apiece: They cost a dollar each.

before 900; Middle English eche, Old English ælc, equivalent to ā ever (see ay1) + (ge)līc alike; cognate with Old High German ēo-gilīh, Old Frisian ellīk, Dutch, Low German elk

1. Each, every are alike in having a distributive meaning. Of two or more members composing an aggregate, each directs attention to the separate members in turn: Each child (of those considered and enumerated) received a large apple. Every emphasizes inclusiveness or universality: Every child (of all in existence) likes to play.

The adjective each is always followed by a singular noun: each person; each book. When the adjective follows a plural subject, the verb agrees with the subject: They each dress in different styles. The houses each have central heating. When the pronoun each comes immediately before the verb, it always takes a singular verb: Each comes (not come) from a different country. When the pronoun is followed by an of phrase containing a plural noun or pronoun, there is a tendency for the verb to be plural: Each of the candidates has (or have) spoken on the issue. Some usage guides maintain that only the singular verb is correct, but plural verbs occur frequently even in edited writing.
It is also sometimes said that the pronoun each must always be referred to by a singular pronoun, but again actual usage does not regularly observe this stricture: Each member of our garden club had their own special interests. In the most formal speech and writing, singular verbs and pronouns occur more frequently than plural: Each member … had his own special interests. The use of plural forms, especially plural pronouns, has been increasing in the United States, partially because of the desire to avoid using he or his to refer to a female.
Anyone, anybody, everyone, everybody, no one, someone, and somebody follow the same general patterns of pronoun agreement as each. See also they.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
each (iːtʃ)
1.  a.  every (one) of two or more considered individually: each day; each person
 b.  (as pronoun): each gave according to his ability
2.  for, to, or from each one; apiece: four apples each
usage  Each is a singular pronoun and should be used with a singular form of a verb: each of the candidates was (not were) interviewed separately

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. ælc "ever alike," from a "ever" + gelic "alike." Similar compounds are found in other Gmc. languages (cf. Du. elk, O.Fris. ellik). Originally used as we now use every (which is a compound of each) or all; modern use is by infl. of L. quisque. Modern spelling appeared late 1500s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


In addition to the idioms beginning with each, also see at each other's throats; made for (each other).

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
Dozens of people are convicted each year, though hearsay is often used as
  evidence and accusers invent verbal transgressions.
Scientists say they have discovered the first evidence that chimpanzees speak
  to each other about objects in their environment.
Each author has an opportunity to review and approve the edited version of the
  manuscript before it appears in print.
Charging families for each bag of rubbish they produce seems environmentally
  sound and economically sensible.
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