Ever

You may have wondered what usages this word has in English. Well, today, I'm here to teach you everything about it.

How to Use "Ever" in English

'Ever' is mainly an adverb in English. In this lesson, we will learn how to discuss and use it.

Functions of 'Ever'

  • Adverb

'Ever' as an Adverb

As stated above, 'ever' mainly functions as an adverb. Below, we will talk about the kinds of adverbs it can be:

'Ever' as an Adverb of Time

We use 'ever' as an adverb of time when we want to point to an indefinite time. Look at the examples below:

When have I ever been so self-congratulatory?

She warned me that she ever sees you around here again, she will slit my throat.

Position in a Sentence

'Ever' can come before the main verbs and modal verbs, and it can also come after adverbs to modify them. Check out the following examples:

Nobody ever found out what happened that day.

Here, 'ever' has come before the main verb.

When did I ever decide to talk to again?

They hardly ever go out these days.

'Ever' as an Adverb of Frequency

We use 'ever' as an adverb of frequency when we want to indicate something happens all the time. Look at the following examples:

His ever-changing behavior is getting on my nerves.

It seems that water pollution is an ever-present obstacle to everyone around the globe.

Position in a Sentence

When 'ever' is an adverb of frequency, it mainly comes before adjectives and adverbs. Note that when it comes before adjectives, we must add a hyphen between them. Look below:

Humans are ever-evolving when we talk about emotions.

These ever-changing emotions are with you till the moment you die.

'Ever' as an Adverb of Degree

We can use 'ever' as an adverb of degree to show the degree of an adjective. It mainly intensifies the meaning of that adjective. Look at the examples below:

It was gonna be Warner's ever first birthday and you ruined it.

Here, 'ever' is intensifying 'first'.

A : Are you excited about tonight?

B : Am I ever!

Position in a Sentence

Since it modifies adjectives, it comes before them. Check out the following examples:

Man, was Annabelle ever a professional chess player.

The mayor announced our city's ever first victory in the Annual Matches.

Tip!

'Ever' can also come after question words to emphasize them. Look below:

Why ever should I trust you again? Just give me one good reason.

Idioms and Expressions

We have several idioms with 'ever'. Below, we have provided the necessary information for you. Check them out:

  • Ever and anon: This one indicates doing something frequently:

Ever and anon, these children come to the park and play with each other.

Ever and anon, I watch a movie on Netflix.

  • If ever there was one: We use this one when we want to emphasize what we are saying:

If ever there was one astonishing ballet performance in this world, it was this one.

If ever there was an amazing lecture, I just watched it.

  • Ever so/such: We use this one when we want to emphasize something:

They are ever so beautiful.

He is ever such an amazing dancer.

  • Yours ever: We use this one as a way of saying farewell at the end of a letter to a friend of yours. It is common among British speakers:

Yours ever, Madeline.

  • Ever since: We use this one when we want to indicate doing something from a time in the past till the present moment. Look below:

Ever since I saw you, I can't get my mind off of you.

Sarah stopped playing the guitar ever since.

  • As ever: When we want to indicate happened the way it usually happens:

As ever, my mom started yelling at me.

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