Free English Grammar Lesson: Using Ever

Michael Confusing Words, Grammar 7 Comments

This is the best pizza ever!

This is the best pizza ever!

A lot of readers and students have asked me how to use ever. Today, I am going to show you the various ways we can use this convenient English word. We’ll also look at the typical grammar patterns used with ever.

Ever is an adverb and means at any time. I am sure you have learned that we use ever with questions and the present perfect tense:

  • Have you ever gone to Brazil?
  • Have you ever heard of David Gilmour?

There are a number of other ways in English that you can use ever.

We usually use ever in questions and negative sentences:

  • You eat a bagel every morning. Do you ever get tired of it?
  • The last time we met, you told me you lost your watch. Did you ever find it?
  • Nobody ever invites the boss out for dinner.
  • I don’t ever want to hear you say those bad words again!

In negative sentences, never is more common than ever:

  • The guys in the office never invite the boss out for dinner.
  • I never want to hear you say those bad words again!

We also use hardly ever, which means almost never:

  • I hardly ever go bowling.
  • Jack said his boss hardly ever gives anyone a compliment.

We also use ever in an if clause:

  • If you ever come to New York, let me know. I’ll show you around.
  • If I ever see my ex-girlfriend again, I’ll be so upset.

Ever is also used in a comparative [ ~ than ever] or superlative [~est + noun+ ever] sentence

  • Bob’s grandfather is 94 years old, but he is stronger than ever.
  • That was the best pizza ever!

In a similar way, we also use ever with as [as + adj + as ever]:

  • Bob’s grandfather is 94 years old, but he is as strong as ever.
  • I worked 15 hours yesterday. I was as tired as ever

Ever is also used with only [only + noun + ever]:

  • The Jack is the only guy ever to have lunch with the CEO.
  • Lori is the only person ever in my family to meet a famous movie star.

Now, it’s your turn. How about trying to use even in an original sentence in the comment box below? I’ll check it for you.

If you know anyone who might be interested in this English language point, why not help them out! Just share this lesson with them. Thanks for studying today!

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