Hard or Hardly?

These two words often confuse some of our ESL (English as a Second Language) students. 

The word HARD can function both as an adjective and as an adverb.


She is a hard worker. 

Here, the word hard functions as an adjective because it modifies or describes the word worker, which is a noun.

What kind of worker is she? She is a hard worker.


She works hard

Here, the word HARD functions as an ADVERB, because it modifies the VERB  works.

How does she work? She works hard.


The word hardly is always an ADVERB. It means very rarely, not very often.


We hardly see them. (We don’t see them very often.)

I hardly go out. I can't stand the noise and heavy traffic. (This means, I don't go out very often.) 

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