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'still' and 'no longer', 'already' and 'yet'

Level: beginner


We use still to show that something continues up to a time in the past, present or future. It goes in front of the main verb:

Even when my father was 65, he still enjoyed playing tennis.
It's past midnight but she's still doing her homework.
I won't be at work next week. We'll still be on holiday.

or after the present simple or past simple of be:

Her grandfather has been very ill, but he is still alive.
We tried to help them, but they were still unhappy.

no longer

We use no longer to show the idea of something stopping in the past, present or future. It goes in front of the main verb:

At that moment, I realised that I no longer loved him.
We no longer live in England. We've moved to France.
From midnight tonight, Mr Jones will no longer be the president.

or after the present simple or past simple of be:

Sadly, Andrew and Bradley are no longer friends. They had an argument.
It was no longer safe to stay in the country. We had to leave immediately.

In a negative sentence, we use any longer or any more. It goes at the end of the sentence:

We don't live in England any longer.
It wasn't safe to stay in the country any more.

still and no longer 1


still and no longer 2



We use already to show that something has happened sooner than it was expected to happen. It goes in front of the main verb:

The car is OK. I've already fixed it.
It was early but they were already sleeping.

or after the present simple or past simple of be:

It was early but we were already tired.
We are already late.

Sometimes already comes at the end of the sentence for emphasis:

It's very early but they are sleeping already.
It was early but we were tired already.
When we got there, most people had arrived already.


We use yet in a negative or interrogative clause, usually with perfective aspect (especially in British English), to show that something has not happened by a particular time. yet comes at the end of a sentence:

It was late, but they hadn't arrived yet.
Have you fixed the car yet?
She won't have sent the email yet.

already and yet



Hi guys!! I am bit confused about the possible meanings yet may indicate when used in a sentence when meaning other than the one mentioned above in the grammar explanation. For instance, the one I quite below from Poe's "The Purloined Letter":

"oh, Dupin you will be the death of me yet!"

Could you please shed some light on this?


Hello Siveboy,

It's not very common to use 'yet' in affirmative sentences, which is why it's not explained above. When it is used, usually in more formal or literary contexts, it shows that we think a situation is continuing and that this is contrary to our expectations. 

I'm afraid I don't remember The Purloined Letter well enough to be able to explain this sentence in context. Does it make sense in that light? If not, please let us know.

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

Is 'Yet' use in perfect tense only? Can I use it in simple tense?

Hello asadbd,

It's perfectly fine to use 'yet' with the simple or continuous present to talk about something which may happen in the future but is not true at the moment of speaking. For example:

He doesn't work here yet.

It isn't raining yet.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Could you tell me please what is the difference between sentences "Have you fixed the car yet?" and "Have you finished that book already?"? As for me, they are identical. So why in the first sentence "yet" is used but in the second: "already"?

Hello msrom,

'Already' here carries a sense of the action being done earlier than expected. We might say this when we are surprised that it has been done so quickly or so soon.

'Yet' does not have this meaning. Depending on the context it could be neutral (just a question) or it could even suggest that we are a little impatient.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Thanks, Peter for your explanation.

Hi Team ,
Sorry for my incorrect question! I think in " They have not found the cure for AIDS yet." the meaning is they have tried many times but it is unsuccessfully. Does " They have not yet found the cure for AIDS. " mean the same or different?
Thank you a lot.

Hello Tanya Peneva,

Both sentences have the same meaning. It may be that many unsuccessful attempts have been made, or it may be that there have been no attempts - it is not clear from the sentence itself, though it may be from the context. For example, I could say:

Humanity has not yet walked on Mars


Humanity has not walked on Mars yet

There has been no attempt to send people to Mars so far.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi ,there! Why in " They have not yet found the cure for AIDS?" , "yet " is before" found" not after " AIDS"? THANKS!