Nearest and next
Nearest means most near in space.
- Excuse me. Where is the nearest hospital?
Next means coming immediately after, in space or in order.
- I am first. Who is next?
- Take the next turning to the right.
- I am looking forward to her next visit.
- When you have finished this, what are you going to do next?
Note that in a few fixed expressions, next is used to mean nearest in space.
- Who lives next door?
- Come and sit next to me.
Next and the next
Next week, next month etc are the week or month just after this one. If I am speaking in May, next month is June; if I am speaking in the year 2005, next year is 2006. Prepositions are not generally used before these time expressions.
- Goodbye - see you next week. (NOT --- the next week.)
- I am spending next Christmas with my family.
The next week means the period of seven days, starting at the moment of speaking.
- I am going to be very busy for the next week. ( = the seven days starting today.)
- I will be at college for the next three years.
Note that when there is no number, we say the next few days/weeks/months, not the next days/weeks/months.
- The next few days are going to be wet. (NOT The next days ---)
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