Last is a tricky word for students of English because it has many meanings and functions.
When we use last as a verb, we mean continue.
Last can also be used as an adverb of position.
Not first, not second, but at the end.
Last can also be used as an adjective in front of a noun.
Used in this way, we use “the” in front of it because its position is unique. There is only one last.
A scolding mother might say: This is the last time I’m going to tell you to do your laundry and put it away!
At this moment, folding laundry is the last thing this teenager wants to be doing.
We can use last as a noun as well.
Here last means the final one/the remainder. We also use it with “the.”
As a pronoun, it means “the previous one.”
Practice: How is last being used in each of these examples? (verb / adverb / adjective / noun / pronoun)
- I think your new boyfriend is better than your last.
- I hope your relationship lasts.
- Meeting him in English class is the last place I’d expect.
- How long do you think this relationship will last?
- I hope your studies still come first rather than last, however.
- I want to talk about other things than just your boyfriend. I hope this is the last that you will mention him for the rest of this conversation.
- What was the last thing that we were discussing?
pronoun / verb / adjective / verb / adverb / noun / adj