In this article:
List of Examples
- 100% – ALWAYS
Example: I always arrive on time.
- 80% – USUALLY
Example: I usually take the bus to school but sometimes I walk.
- 60% – OFTEN
Example: They often went to the beach in summer.
- 50% – SOMETIMES
Example: I sometimes have cake after dinner.
- 30% – OCCASIONALLY
Example: We occasionally meet for a drink after work.
- 5% – RARELY/HARDLY EVER
Example: I hardly ever go to the cinema.
- 0% – NEVER
Example: I never drink vodka.
What is an adverb of frequency?
An adverb is a word that modifies (describes) a verb (he talks loudly), an adjective (very small).
An adverb of frequency shows how often something happens. It modifies the verb to show how frequent something happens.
When to use adverbs of frequency
We use adverbs of frequency when we want to show how often something happens.
The position of the adverb of frequency is usually before the main verb of the sentence
Subject + adverb + verb
I always brush
This is true for all verbs except the verb to be. The adverb of frequency comes after the verb to be.
He is always late.
When there are two verbs in a sentence(with auxiliary and modal verbs), then the adverb of frequency comes between the two verbs.
Subject + verb + adverb + main verb
I have always loved you.
We can also use the following adverbs at the start of a sentence:
Usually, normally, often, frequently, sometimes, occasionally
Usually, I eat dinner alone.
But we can’t use the following at the beginning of a sentence:
Always, seldom, rarely, hardly, ever, never
How do you make questions with adverbs of frequency?
The same rules apply for questions except you need to invert the subject and the verb like in all questions.
Why are you always late?
Why did you sometimes stay after school?
Adverbs of frequency – The Present Simple
We often use adverbs of frequency with the present simple because we say how often a habit happens. We use the present simple for habits.
I sometimes eat cereal for breakfast.
I hardly ever eat steak for dinner.
Adverb of frequency and degree- What is the difference?
An adverb of frequency shows how often something happens.
An adverb of degree shows how much something happens
Let’s look at some example sentences:
Adverbs of frequency
I always brush my teeth before bed.
I never play football.
Adverbs of degree
I am extremely tired.
I am very good at football.
Adverb of definite or indefinite frequency
All of the examples above are adverbs of indefinite frequency. They do not mention a specific amount of times something happens.
Adverbs of definite frequency give you a specific amount of frequency that something happens.
Here are some examples:
- every day
- twice a month
- once a year
- five times a day
- every other week
I go to the gym twice a week.
I eat dinner in a restaurant once a month.
There is a monthly meeting on the first Friday of every month.
I exercise daily.
Adverbs of definite frequency usually come at the end of the sentence.
Full list of adverbs of frequency
Always – 100%
Annually – once a year
Constantly – 95%
Daily – once a day
Eventually – after a long time
Ever – used in questions
Frequently – 70%
Generally – 60%
Hardly ever -10%
Hourly – once an hour
Infrequently – 10%
Later – after a short time
Monthly – once a month
Never – 0%
Next – after what is happening now
Nightly – once a night
Normally – 70%
Now – at this moment
Occasionally – 30%
Often – 60%
Quarterly – every 3 months
Rarely – 10%
Regularly – 70%
Seldom – 10%
Sometimes – 50%
Soon – the near future
Today – this day
Tonight – this night
Weekly – once a week
Yearly – once a year