What are the Most Used Words in English?

Quinn Pedrick, Managing Editor

All humans communicate whether it be verbally or through written words. Every language, every culture, every individual has some form of communication, even if they have a hearing or speaking disability or are selectively mute. I know I never stop speaking because even when I’m not chatting off someone’s ear, I have a constant monologue in my mind. Words are a huge part of my life because I find that every sentence is a small work of art no matter the context, and there is good and bad art just as there are good and bad sentences. I only know English, so I came to wonder: what are the most used words in the entire English language?

Obviously the most used word in the English language is the word “the” because just in this sentence I have used the word “the” four times. Words like “the” or “be” are extremely boring words that exist for other words to make sense when used, so we are just going to focus on the nouns and adjectives that are used the most in English.

Time…. Time is the most commonly used noun in all of English, according to Wikipedia. I would have never guessed that the word “time” is used more than anything else. It does make sense when thought about more in depth because time is the very basis of humanity. Humans live based off of time in terms of life and death but also in regular daily functioning. Plus, there are millions of works of literature or scientific study about time travel or the existence of time.

The second most non-boring noun is “person” based on Wikipedia’s rankings. This makes complete sense to me because we are all people who talk about other people every single day even if we aren’t gossiping. We refer to unknown people as “a person” or “that person” constantly.

According to Wikipedia, the most commonly used verb is “good” which is a very boring and obviously overused word. Out of all the adjectives in the world, every single person has to say good at least 10 times a day whether it is in writing, verbally, or mentally. Phrases like “good job” or “that’s good” are used so frequently by people of all intelligences that it makes complete sense it would be number 1.

Wikipedia says that “new” is the second most used adjective. There are hundreds of new things introduced to people every day whether they are objects, events, or people. New shows, new books, new people, new topics, new games, new media, and billions of new things are talked about on a daily basis.

English is very weird. Any language is very weird. Words are very weird, but they have such significance in every society including the little words like “the” despite their level of being interesting. Imagine a descriptive sentence without articles, prepositions, pronouns, adjectives, or conjunctions. It doesn’t sound hard, but I spent a solid 10 minutes trying to write one that made sense before giving up.

What non-boring words do you use that would be at the top of your most used words chart? Tell us in the comments!