Nobody vs. Somebody

What is the difference between the two indefinite pronouns of 'nobody' and 'somebody'? Where can we use each one of them. Let's find out.

"Nobody" vs. "Somebody" in the English Grammar

Are They Opposites?

'Nobody' and 'somebody' both can be either indefinite pronouns or used as nouns.

'Nobody' and 'Somebody' as Indefinite Pronouns

Nobody: Pronoun

As an indefinite pronoun, 'nobody' means no person; 'no one'.

Nobody spoke for a solid one minute. It was awkward.

Somebody: Pronoun

However, 'somebody' as an indefinite pronoun means an unspecified person.

Somebody came up to me and said hi.

As opposed to the example below which has the opposite meaning to the first example:

Nobody came up to me to even ask me my name.

Nobody: Negative Maker

Words such as 'nobody', 'nowhere', or 'nothing' are negative makers. It means in standard English, when we use these negative makers in a sentence, we should not commonly use a negative verb.

I opened the door and said hello but there was nobody in the room. (NOT ...but there wasn’t nobody in the room.)

Somebody: Negative or Positive Statement?

We can use 'somebody' in negative questions. But in statements, 'somebody' can only be used with positive verbs (in negative statements, you should use 'anybody').

I called somebody to come and pick me up.

I didn't called anybody to come and pick me up.

'Nobody' and 'Somebody' as Nouns

Nobody: Noun

As a noun, 'nobody' means a person who is not important or famous, or influential.

Everyone at school, treated him like like a nobody.

Somebody: Noun

Whereas, 'somebody' means a famous, renowned person, someone who is a celebrity.

He wants to be a somebody someday.

  • linkedin
  • linkedin
  • facebook
  • facebook
  • email

You might also like

Anyone vs. Anyone Else

What is the difference between 'anyone' and 'anyone else'? Do they have different meanings? Here, we will discuss these two.

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 Body

'No body understands' or 'Nobody understands'? Are both these sentences correct? Do they have the same meaning? Let's see.

Nobody vs. None

Is there a difference between the words 'none' and 'nobody'? Can they be used interchangeably? Here, we will go through these two words.

Nobody vs. Nobodies

Can 'nobody' be used as a plural pronoun? Or it should always be used as a singular noun? Here, we will see if 'nobody' can be pluralized or not?

No One vs. None

What is the difference between 'no one' and 'none'? Do they have the same meaning? Let's discuss these two indefinite pronouns and see for ourselves.