Difference Between Already and Just

The words “Already” and “Just” are usually used when time is being referenced in the general sentence. When the subject matter is time-related, can we replace “Just” and “Already”; other than that they can never be used in place of each other.

Already vs Just

The main difference between Already and Just is that the former is used to mention tasks that have been completed in a prior timeline, such as years ago. The latter refers to work that has been completed a short time before it was mentioned.

Already vs Just

The word “Already” is used to talk about a task done or an event that has taken place just before a specific time; such as past, present, or future. It usually suggests that the job is done.

The word “Just” is used to imply that something had happened right before it was mentioned. It is typically a replacement for terms like “merely”, or “only”, as it has similar meanings as them.


Comparison Table Between Already and Just (in Tabular Form)

Parameter of ComparisonAlreadyJust
OriginEarly usages were seen during the Middle English era, and also around the 14th century.Most early usages were seen during the 1600s. The word also paralleled the French word “juste”.
Grammatical SpeechIn regards to speech, “Already” is an adverb, accurately, it is a time-adverb.“Just” is known to present in two forms of expression; as an adverb and an adjective.
UsagesThe word can be used in sentences where time is referenced and also used to describe the progress of a task.It is used to talk about something that has happened a short time before. It can also mean “fair”.
Example“This day has already started to get exciting, and isn’t even the afternoon yet.”“I would have reached work earlier if I hadn’t just missed the last bus that left from my town.”
SynonymsThe word “Already” sounds similar to the following terms -So far, previously, earlier on, before.“Just” possesses the same degree of meaning – fair, not long ago, lately, precisely.


What is the Meaning of Already?

The word “Already” has been seen to be referenced long ago during the Middle English period, and even as far back as the 14th century, where it was experimented as a variant of the word “ready”.

Now in terms of speech, “Already” is a time-adverb that is accompanied by auxiliary and the principal verb or at the end of a clause.

One everyday use of “Already” is when it is used in sentences where time is referenced, whether it may be in the past, present, or future form. In the present perfect form, it means talking about something that has happened before.

Example –

  1. I’ve already used up all my sick days when I was vacationing out in the Bahamas last year.”
  2. “The last train for London has already left, even though I reached the station on time.”

Now, “Already” can also be used when talking about something happening in the present or that is being mentioned as the event is taking place. It could also incorporate the completion of a task.


  1. This day has been going bad already, and now I hear that someone scratched my car as they were parking.”
  2. “As you can see, I have already made my bed just as I left the room, so you need not worry about it.”

The word “Already” can also in a few contexts replace the word “even”, which a variant of something that has happened earlier.


What is the Meaning of Just?

The word “Just” was frequently used in the 1660s, and was an integral part of the Middle English era, as it also paralleled a word in the French language, a variation – “juste”.

The word exists in two forms of speech, and its usage differs significantly in either way. They are –

  1. Adjective
  2. Adverb

When the word “Just” is used as an adverb, and when it is accompanied by a word in the present perfect tense, it placed in the sentence to help reference an event that has just taken place, or took place ‘a short while ago’.

Example –

  1.  “I had just seen this movie in the theatre two days ago, and its already on Blu-ray.”
  2. “I have just come out of the worst meeting of my life, and I have to get back to work in an hour or two.”

“Just” when used as an adjective, takes on a completely different meaning. “Just” is commonly considered a word that is related to time. But, it can also mean “to be fair” or “to provide justice”.

Example –

  1. No matter what the judge has decided, I know one thing for sure, that his judgment will be just.”
  2. “After being given many chances to prove himself, Tom was fired. It was a just decision by the manager.”

The word “Just” cannot be used to reference anything that has taken place long ago in the past or the future.


Main Differences Between Already and Just

  1. The word “Already” was first used in the 14th century as a variation of “ready”. “Just” was used in the late 1600s, derived from French word “juste”.
  2. “Already” exists only a time-adverb in terms of speech. While “Just” exists as an adverb and an adjective.
  3. “Already” is used when we are mentioning something before an event in the past, present, or future. “Just” is used to talk about something that has happened a short time before.
  4. “Already” is a purely time-based adverb, so it cannot possess any other meanings, while “Just” can mean “to be fair” when it is used as an adjective.
  5. In terms of synonyms, “Already” means the same as so far, previously, earlier on and before. “Just” is similar to words such as fair, not long ago, lately, precisely.



The words “Already” and “Just” are used in sentences that are generally time-based, or in some form or way talk about time. The term “Already” just works with any sentence structure that deals with the past, present or even the future, while “Just” is used in sentences when talking about something that has happened a while ago.

But “Just” also means “to be fair” or “to provide justice”. Both these words are very delicate with regards to the context in which they are placed, and only a few times can they replace each other in a sentence.


  1. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/already
  2. https://hinative.com/en-US/questions/11891721
  3. https://www.italki.com/question/400069?hl=es
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