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

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?

'Nobody' is more common than 'no one' in spoken English. It is also more informal.

Generally, 'no one' is the better choice for academic writing, and 'nobody' is used in informal and spoken English.

When to Use Nobody

'Nobody' is a pronoun meaning 'not any person'. It is a singular pronoun in sentences; therefore, we need to use singular verbs with it.

Nobody knew what he did for a living.

Nobody wanted to play with Sam in the kindergarten.

When to Use No One

'No one' has the same meaning as 'nobody', it also means not any person. Use singular verbs with it.

No one knew what to do.

No one likes being criticized.

Are They Gender-Neutral?

In modern English, both of these pronouns are used as plural indefinite pronouns in contexts when we want to avoid using gendered pronouns.

Nobody raised their hands to answer the teacher's question.

Negative Words

'Nobody' and 'no one' are both negative words. So, you should never use another negative word after no one.

No one did anything to help us. (Not "No one did nothing to help us.")

Warning

You should not use the preposition 'of' after no one. As a result, 'no one of us,' 'no one of her friends', etc. is wrong.
Use 'none of' (when talking about a group of three or more people) or 'neither of' (when talking about 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.")

Noone?

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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