One-word sentences in English Posted by on Apr 19, 2016 in English Grammar, English Language

Image by Ozzy Delaney on licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Image by Ozzy Delaney on licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Here I’m going to highlight some of the simplest sentences in English. All of these sentences are only ONE word long! Sit back, relax, and enjoy; these are going to be some of the easiest English sentences you’ve ever learned. (It is about time something in English was easy, right?!)

One-word sentences in English come in a few different forms:
interrogatives or questions (example: Who?)
imperatives or commands (example: Stop!)
declaratives (example: Me.)
locatives (example: Here.)
nominatives (example: Jesse.)

In fact a lot of words in English can be one-word sentences, it all depends on the context.

A complete sentence, even a one-word sentence, needs to have a noun and a verb. In one-word sentences the subject (noun) or the action (verb) of the sentence is implied. That means it is understood in the context of the sentence (or the sentences around it) so that the subject and/or verb do not need to be stated explicitly.

Being brief and saying as much as you can in as few words as possible is something a lot of people want to do. Be careful though, sometimes you can sound robotic or rude if you use too many one-word sentences.

Here is a list of some common one-word sentences. I’m sure you already use some of these.  Along side the one-word sentences I have written out what you could say, with more words, to mean the same thing.

Hi. (Hi there.)
Wait. (Please wait.)
Begin. (You may begin.)
Stop. (You need to stop.)
Hurry. (Hurry up please.)
Catch. (Catch this.)
Here. (Here you go.)
Go! (Get going now!)
Help! (I need help!)
Eat. (Go ahead and eat.)
Yes.  (Yes, that would be great.)
No.  (No, thank you.)
Thank you. (Thank you, I really appreciate it.)
The wh-question words: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? 
A lot of swear words: Sh*t., F*ck., etc.

Do you have a favorite one-word sentence? Add to this list by posting a comment below! Thank you.

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About the Author: Gabriele

Hi there! I am one of Transparent Language's ESL bloggers. I am a 32-year-old native English speaker who was born and raised in the United States. I am living in Washington, DC now, but I have lived all over the US and also spent many years living and working abroad. I started teaching English as a second language in 2005 after completing a Master's in Applied Linguists and a Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults' (CELTA). Since that time I have taught ESL in the United States at the community college and university level. I have also gone on to pursue my doctorate in psychology and now I also teach courses in psychology. I like to stay connected to ESL learners around the world through Transparent Languages ESL Blog. Please ask questions and leave comments on the blog and I will be sure to answer them.


  1. Garba Ahmad:

    Finished (it’s finished)