Nobody vs. No One

Is there any difference between the words 'nobody' and 'no one'? Can we use them interchangeably? Here we will explain their differences and similarities.

"Nobody" vs. "No One" in the English Grammar

What Is Their Main Difference?

'No one' is more commonly used in formal writing such as academic writing, while 'nobody' is more commonly used in informal and spoken English.

Similarities

Both 'nobody' and 'no one' are pronouns that are used to indicate that there is not a single person who fits a certain description or meets a certain criteria.

Nobody knows what he does for a living.

Nobody wanted to play with Sam in the kindergarten.

No one knew what to do.

No one likes being criticized.

Both of these pronouns are used as negative indefinite pronouns that are used with singular verbs. Since they are already negative, no other negative words should be used in the sentence.

Nobody was at the party when I arrived.

No one did anything to help us. (Not 'No one did nothing to help us.' or 'No one didn't do anything to help us')

Warning!

The preposition 'of' should not be used after 'no one'. Instead, 'none of' should be used when referring to a group of three or more people, and 'neither of' should be used when referring to two people.

None of her friends came to her party. (Not "No one of her friends came to her party.")

Neither of his parents can cook. (Not "no one of his parents can cook.")

Tip!

There is no such word as 'noone' in the English language. We write 'no one' as two separate words (no one) or, less commonly, with a hyphen (no-one).

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