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'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already'

Do you know how to use just, yet, still and already with the present perfect?

Look at these examples to see how just, yet, still and already are used.

I've just seen Sai. He's really enjoying his new job.
We haven't decided what to do yet.
I still haven't called Yumi to see how she is.
I've already had lunch but I'll join you for coffee.

Try this exercise to test your grammar.

Grammar test 1

'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already': Grammar test 1

Read the explanation to learn more.

Grammar explanation

We often use just, yet, still and already with the present perfect because they are related to the present moment. This page focuses on the meaning and use of these words when they are used with the present perfect.

just

Just used with the present perfect means 'a short time before'.

I've just seen Susan coming out of the cinema.
Mike's just called. Can you ring him back, please?
Have you just taken my pen?!

Just comes between the auxiliary verb (have/has) and the past participle.

yet

Yet used with the present perfect means 'at any time up to now'. We use it to emphasise that we expect something to happen soon. Yet (in this context) is only used in negative sentences and questions.

Have you finished your homework yet?
I haven't finished it yet. I'll do it after dinner.
A. Where's Sam? B: He hasn't arrived yet.

Yet comes at the end of the sentence or question.

still

Still used with the present perfect means that something hasn't happened. We use it to emphasise that we expected the thing to happen earlier. Still (in this context) is only used in negative sentences.

I've been waiting for an hour and the bus still hasn't come.
They promised me that report yesterday but they still haven't finished it.
She still hasn't replied to my email. Maybe she's on holiday.

Still comes between the subject (the bus, they, etc.) and auxiliary verb (haven't/hasn't).

already

Already used with the present perfect means 'before now'. We use it to emphasise that something happened before something else or earlier than expected.

I've already spent my salary and it's two weeks before payday.
He wanted to see
Sudden Risk but I've already seen it.
The train's left already!

Already can come between the auxiliary and the main verb or at the end of the clause.

Do this exercise to test your grammar again.

Grammar test 2

'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already': Grammar test 2

Language level

Intermediate: B1

Comments

Could you please tell me the differences or uses between these two examples?
1. A: Where is Rosy? B: She's already gone to bed.
2. A: Where is Rosy? B: She's just gone out with her friends.

Hello Kunthea

It could be different depending on the situation, but in many cases 1 would express some surprise at the fact that Rosy is in bed now -- for example, if it were very early for her to be in bed.

2 expresses the idea that she left very recently.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you.

I have just learned english from this website but I can't speak well yet but
I still practice to improve my speaking
And I have already learned complete grammar course but I need more practice to be better speak.

Can 'just' be used between the subject and main verb as in the comment below?
Regards

Hi Sir
"I just live for music". Is it correct?
Thank you.

Hello Emily Mellor

'just' has quite a few different uses -- if you follow the link, you'll see a good number of them.

Where 'just' should go in a sentence depends on the way it's used, that is, the meaning that it has. I'm not sure exactly what you mean by 'I just live for music', but if you use it for emphasis, then you could say it that way. If I wanted to express the idea that music is the most important thing in my life, I probably would just say 'I live for music', though. It depends a lot on the context.

Hope this helps.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Many thanks,Sir

Hi, I was wondering if you could tell me when 'yet' can be placed before the main verb, as in, "He hasn't yet finished his degree." Is it purely for emphasis or is there some other grammatical justification for this particular placement? Many thanks, Robert

Hello envint251,

I think this is purely a rhetorical device. It adds emphasis, as you say, and sounds very formal. It's much more common to put yet at the end of the clause.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

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