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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

Dear English Team,

May I know what is the difference between a sentence with "yet" and one without "yet"? For example:

"I have not yet finished my proposal." vs " I have not finished my proposal"

"Has your passport arrived yet?" vs "Has your passport arrived?"

Another question: I saw a structure of be/have yet to do sth. "They have yet to reply to our offer." How is it different from "They have not yet replied to our offer"?

Many thanks.

Hi IsabelTim_123,

Adding yet in the sentences adds a bit of extra meaning. It means that the speaker has some expectation that the action should have happened by now, or will happen soon. For example, I have not finished my proposal yet suggests that he/she might finish it sometime soon. Without yet, the sentence is just stating that the proposal isn't finished. Has your passport arrived yet? suggests that I expected it to have already arrived. If it's very late, for example, you could say this.

About your second question, the two sentences mean the same thing! But the first version (be/have + yet to do something) is more formal in style.

Best wishes,

Jonathan

The LearnEnglish Team

Thanks for your detailed explanation!

Could "Has your passport arrived yet?" be used when I expect the passport to arrive soon instead of expecting it to have already arrived?

Also, is there any difference between "be yet to do" and "have yet to do"?

Thank you.

Hi IsabelTim_123,

Yes! You can use yet in that situation.

No, there's no difference in meaning between be yet to and have yet to. But I just checked the frequency of both phrases, and it seems that have yet to is more commonly used. 

Best wishes,

Jonathan

The LearnEnglish Team

It is such an interesting topic, I consider that linkers and adverbs give us much more fluency in our conversations, that is the way how we can express our thoughts. I have already done this activity, it is well explained and understandable.

Is it necessary to use 'still' and 'yet' with negative context only?

Hello CHEKYTAN,

You can use still with affirmative verb forms:

He still lives there.

I'm still working at the factory.

 

You can use yet with the be +to verb future forn:

He is yet to finish.

With other verb forms yet sounds very archaic and is not normally used in modern English.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

 

 

Hello Peter,

Noted.

Thank you.

I am good at still, just and already. I got super results.

I just need someone to practice with me English conversation.

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