Already vs Just: Difference and Comparison

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


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Key Takeaways

  1. “Already” is an adverb that indicates something has happened before the present time or earlier than expected; “just” is an adverb that emphasizes the immediacy or recentness of an event or action.
  2. “Already” conveys that an event or action occurred before now or sooner than anticipated, while “just” suggests that something happened recently or only a short time ago.
  3. Both adverbs relate to the timing of events or actions, but “already” focuses on the prior occurrence or early completion, while “just” emphasizes recency or immediacy.

Already vs Just

“Already” is an adverb that refers to something that has happened or been completed before a specific point in time, indicating that an action or event has occurred earlier than expected or previously arranged. “Just” is also an adverb that means “recently” or “a short time ago.”

Already vs Just

The word “Already” refers to a task done or an event just before a specific time, such as past, present, or future. It suggests that the job is done.

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


Comparison Table

Parameter of ComparisonAlreadyJust
OriginEarly usages were seen during the Middle English era and around the 14th century.Most early usages were seen during the 1600s. The word also paralleled the French word “just.”
Grammatical SpeechRegarding 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 to describe a task’s progress.It is used to talk about something that has happened briefly before. It can also mean “fair.”
Example“This day has already started to get exciting, and it 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, and before.“Just” possesses the same degree of meaning – fair, not long ago, lately, precisely.


What is the Meaning of Already?

The word “Already” was referenced long ago during the Middle English period, even as far back as the 14th century, when it experimented as a variant of “ready.”

Regarding speech, “Already” is a time adverb accompanied by an 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 in the past, present, or future form. In the present perfect condition, it means discussing something that has happened before.

Example –

  1. I’ve already used up all my sick days when I vacationed 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 being mentioned as the event occurs. 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 is 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 comment 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 accompanied by a word in the present perfect tense, it is placed in the sentence to help reference an event that has just taken place or taken place a short while ago.

Example –

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

“Just” takes on a completely different meaning when used as an adjective. “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 reference anything that has occurred long ago in the past or the future.


Main Differences Between Already and Just

  1. “Already” was first used in the 14th century as a variation of “ready.” “Just” was used in the late 1600s, derived from the French word “juste.”
  2. “Already” exists only as a time adverb in terms of speech. While “Just” exists as an adverb and an adjective.
  3. “Already” is used when we mention something before an event in the past, present, or future. “Just” talks about something that has happened briefly 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. Regarding synonyms, “Already” means the same as so far, previously, earlier, and before. “Just” is similar to words such as fair, not long ago, lately, precisely.
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