Near, nearest and next
Near can be used as a preposition, an adjective or an adverb.
When used as an adverb, near is the opposite of far. It means within a short distance in space or time.
- The station is quite near.
- The Christmas holidays are drawing near.
- He lives nearby. OR He lives near at hand.
Near can also be used as a preposition.
- Don’t go near the edge of the parapet. You may fall over it.
- Don’t go near the well.
- It is getting near lunch-time.
- We live near the station.
Near can also be used as an adjective. The adjective near has comparative and superlative forms ending in –er and –est.
- She is a near relative of mine.
- They are our near and dear ones.
Nearer and nearest are generally used with to.
- Who is that little boy sitting nearest to the door?
Nearest and next
Nearest means most near in space.
- Excuse me. Where’s the nearest bus station?
Next means ‘after this / that one’.
- We look forward to your next visit.
- We will get off at the next station.
Almost and nearly
Almost and nearly can be used with similar meanings.
- There were nearly a hundred people.
- There were almost a hundred people.
Nearly is not normally used with non-assertive words like never, nobody, nothing, anything, any etc.
- He will eat almost anything. (NOT He will eat nearly anything.)