The Mistake: We English speakers in China often confuse the words ‘hard’ and ‘hardly’:
- Gopi was working hardly all day.
- It hardly rained yesterday.
‘Hard’ and ‘Hardly’ often have opposite meanings. Use them correctly.
The Correction: Speak more naturally and with confidence by using hardly(an adverb) to mean “almost not at all” and hard (an adjective or adverb) to mean “industrious”, “forceful”, or “difficult”:
- Gopi was hardly working all day. (Gopi is lazy and didn’t do much work.)
- Gopi was working hard all day. (Gopi is a good worker. He did a lot.)
- It hardly rained yesterday. (It rained only a little yesterday.)
- It rained hard yesterday. (It rained heavily yesterday.)