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English Grammar

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

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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