English Lesson: Anything, Nothing, Anyone & No One

Michael Uncategorized 4 Comments

There isn’t anyone in the meeting room!

Today, lets look at anything, nothing, anyone & no one. These four words can be confusing sometimes.

Anything and nothing have the exact same meaning, but the way we use these words is different:
We use anything with a negative verb and questions:

  • I didn’t eat anything for breakfast.
  • We thought it was strange that Tom didn’t say anything to his boss.
  • Did Cathy find anything on sale at the store?
  • BUT NOT: I didn’t eat nothing for breakfast.

We use nothing with a positive verb:

  • I ate nothing for breakfast.
  • We thought it was strange that Tom said nothing to his boss.
  • Cathy said she found nothing on sale at the store.
  • BUT NOT: I ate anything for breakfast.

Anyone and no one also have the exact same meaning, and the way we use these words is also different:
We use anyone with a negative verb and questions:

  • I didn’t see anyone in the meeting room at 3:00.
  • I couldn’t find anyone to take care of my dog when I go on vacation.
  • Does Cathy know anyone who still uses CD’s?
  • BUT NOT: I didn’t see no one in the meeting room at 3:00.

We use no one with a positive verb:

  • I saw no one in the meeting room at 3:00
  • I found no one to take care of my dog when I go on vacation.
  • Cathy said she knows no one who still uses CD’s.
  • BUT NOT: I saw anyone in the meeting room at 3:00.

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