Most Common English Words (no. 1.1)

One advice I read on the internet on how to get better at speaking is to start with the 100 most common words of the language you’re learning, so I decided to share English’s most common words to remind everyone how important they are.

On the top of the list is a word that many students forget to use sometimes: “the”. There are many rules on how to use the word and listing them all can be too much so today I will focus on the general rules.

First, “the” is used when talking about a specific person or thing.

  • The dog of my neighbor is a golden retriever. (Not any dog, only my neighbor’s.)
  • She is the woman who wrote Harry Potter. (Not any woman, only the author of Harry Potter.)

It can also be used when talking about something or somebody that was already mentioned.

  • I saw a dog outside. The dog was a golden retriever.
  • Everyone knows Harry Potter. The book is very famous.

It is also used to talk about people or things that are one of a kind.

  • The queen of England is famous. (There is only one queen in England.)
  • The sun will rise at 6:17 this morning. (We have only one sun.)

Finally, “the” is used to talk about something or somebody that represents a group.

  • The French enjoy cheese and wine.
  • I think the rose is the most beautiful flower.

Next time I will write about the rules when using “the” with the names of places or things so please return tomorrow for that.
P.S. Can you guess how many times I used “the” in this post? NINE!