Adverbs of Frequency
The most common adverbs of frequency are always, usually, often, sometimes, seldom, rarely, and never. The following chart shows the relative frequencies of these adverbs. It is important to understand that the percentages only show approximate frequencies; other sources will have slightly different numbers. What is important is not the absolute number, but only the relative frequency.
What are adverbs?
Traditionally an adverb is defined as a word that modifies a verb, adjective, another adverb, or a whole clause or sentence. There are many kinds of adverbs; common types include adverbs of manner that tell how (easily, quietly), adverbs of time that tell when (afterwards, later), adverbs of place and direction that tell where (there, downstairs, backward, up), adverbs of degree that tell how much (very, almost, extremely) and adverbs of frequency that tell how often (always, sometimes, never).
What do we mean by adverbs of frequency?
Adverbs of frequency tell us how often an action takes place.
Are there other adverbs of frequency?
Yes. In addition to the adverbs in the chart above, other common adverbs of frequency include constantly, generally, normally, regularly, frequently, routinely, repeatedly, occasionally, infrequently, and hardly ever.
Where do we put adverbs of frequency?
The basic rule is that adverbs of frequency come before the main verb but after present and past forms of be (am, are, is, was, were). In the case of tenses that use an auxiliary, we put the adverb between the auxiliary and the main verb. The following tables show the position of the adverbs of frequency in affirmative, negative, interrogative, and imperative sentences.
Beethoven often went to Baden for the summer
The bus is usually on time
Suzanne doesn't usually get involved in politics.
It doesn't often snow here at Christmas.
Iron supplements aren't usually necessary for men.
Are you always so cheerful in the morning?
Does Kimberly usually have breakfast at home?