Most Common English Words (no. 11)

From today until Saturday I will continue writing about the most common words in English. I have finished the top ten most common words in the previous posts, so this post is about the eleventh most common word, “it“.

It” is a pronoun and there are basically three ways to use it. First, “it” is used to take the place of a thing or animal (or even a person) being talked about and has already been mentioned.

  • I can’t find my pen. Do you know where it is?
  • Someone is knocking on the door. Can you see who it is?

Next, it is used as an anticipatory subject, meaning that it represents a verb clause that will be mentioned later in the sentence.

  • It is fun to play the piano. (It = “to play the piano”, which is a verb clause)
  • It is important for you to study.

Finally, “it” is used to talk about the time, date, and weather.

  • It is time to start.
  • It’s spring so it’s getting warmer.
  • It was sunny all day today.

I’ll continue the list with the twelfth word tomorrow.