Adverbs of Frequency: Its Definition, Usage, and Examples

Jandari Wick

Adverbs are one of those tools, and they’re pretty useful for making our talk clearer. One kind of adverb we use a lot is called “Adverbs of Frequency.” They help us talk about how often things happen. Let’s learn about them together in this article!

What are Adverbs of Frequency?

Adverbs of frequency are words that tell us how often an action happens. They give us valuable details about the regularity or frequency of an activity, making our sentences more informative. These adverbs are particularly useful for describing how often things occur, from the everyday to the occasional.

Here are some common adverbs of frequency:

  • Always
  • Usually
  • Often
  • Sometimes
  • Rarely
  • Seldom
  • Hardly ever
  • Never

How to Use Adverbs of Frequency?

Adverbs of frequency are usually placed before the main verb in a sentence, but after auxiliary verbs. If there are no auxiliary verbs, they come right before the main verb. Let’s look at some sentence structures to illustrate:

With Auxiliary Verbs:

She goes to the gym on Saturdays always.

We eat dinner at 7 PM usually.

He takes the bus to work often.

Without Auxiliary Verbs:

I skip breakfast never.

They visit their relatives seldom.

The train runs late hardly ever.

Adverbs of frequency can also intensify the degree of frequency with modifiers like ‘almost’ and ‘nearly’:

She arrives on time almost always.

They complete their assignments ahead of schedule nearly always.

Examples in Sentences

Here is a table specific examples to better understand how adverbs of frequency work:

Adverb of FrequencyExample Sentence
AlwaysShe brings her laptop to the meetings always.
UsuallyWe meet for coffee on Fridays usually.
OftenHe forgets his umbrella at home often.
SometimesSometimes, I prefer working in complete silence.
RarelyThey go on vacations due to work commitments rarely.
SeldomHe attends social gatherings seldom.
Hardly everThe boss approves overtime requests hardly ever.
NeverShe misses her morning jog never.

What are The Rules for Adverb of Frequency?

Here are some practical rules to keep in mind:

1. Placement in a Sentence:

Adverbs of frequency usually hang out before the main verb.

If there are helper verbs, the adverb slides in after the helper but before the main verb.

No helpers? No problem. Stick the adverb right in front of the main verb.


  • She brings her lunch always.
  • They’ve never visited that museum.
  • He rarely eats fast food.

2. Negative Sentences:

In negative sentences, the adverb still likes to be close to the action, right before the main verb.


  • She never forgets her keys.

3. Adverbs with Be-verbs:

When “to be” shows up (am, is, are, was, were), the adverb chills out after it.


  • They are on time usually.
  • He is always happy.

4. Position in Sentence Structure:

While you can jazz things up by putting the adverb at the start or end of a sentence, the usual groove is before the main verb.


  • Always, he completes his tasks promptly.
  • She finishes her work on time, usually.

5. Modifying Adjectives:

Adverbs of frequency can also spice up adjectives to show how much or how little.


  • She is always happy to help.
  • He’s almost never late for meetings.

6. Use of Intensifiers:

Pump up the volume with words like “almost” and “nearly” to make it clear you’re talking about a whole lot or almost all the time.


  • We almost always finish our work before the deadline.
  • She is nearly always in a good mood.

Frequency Adverbs and Adjective Placement

Adverbs of frequency can also modify adjectives, indicating the degree or intensity of the adjective:

  • She is always happy to help others.
  • He is usually calm during stressful situations.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Adverbs of Frequency

Q1: What are Adverbs of Frequency and how do you use them?

Adverbs of frequency, such as “always,” “usually,” and “never,” convey how often an action occurs. They enhance communication by detailing the regularity of activities. Typically placed before the main verb, they bring clarity to sentences, providing valuable information in everyday conversation.

Q2: Where should adverbs of frequency be placed in a sentence?

Adverbs of frequency are usually placed before the main verb in a sentence. If there are auxiliary verbs, they come after the auxiliary verb but before the main verb. If there are no auxiliary verbs, they come directly before the main verb.

Q2: Can adverbs of frequency modify adjectives?

Yes, adverbs of frequency can modify adjectives to indicate the degree or intensity of the adjective.

For example, “She is always happy to help others” or “He is usually calm during stressful situations.”

Q3: Can adverbs of frequency be used in formal writing?

A6: While some adverbs of frequency may be suitable for formal writing, it’s advisable to use them judiciously. In more formal contexts, consider alternative expressions for conveying frequency to maintain a professional tone.

Q4: Do all adverbs of frequency follow the same pattern in sentence structure?

A7: Yes, in general, adverbs of frequency follow a similar pattern in sentence structure, being placed before the main verb. However, variations can occur based on the presence of auxiliary verbs and the specific context of the sentence.

Q5: Can adverbs of frequency be used to describe past or future actions?

Yes, adverbs of frequency can be used to describe past, present, and future actions. They provide information about the regularity of an action regardless of when it occurs.


In conclusion, adverbs of frequency are like the seasoning in our language mix. We’ve covered what they are, how to use them, and seen examples that show how practical they are in everyday chat.

These adverbs quietly help us share how often things happen without making a fuss. Whether you’re chatting about your daily routine or pointing out something that doesn’t happen often, these adverbs add a nice touch to your language.