If the uses of in the end and at the end aren’t clear to you, keep reading – they’ll make perfect sense in the end, as it’s explained at the end of this introduction. Hehe…
At the end refers to a specific time or location, while in the end is an idiomatic phrase that means “in conclusion” or “in summary.”
Consider these examples:
- At the end of the day we went home. In the end, it was a long day.
- At the end of the game, our team won. In the end, our team won.
- We were happy in the end. We weren’t happy at the end of the movie.
- The heroes won in the end. The heroes celebrated at the end of their journey.
In the end
In the end means “finally,” “after a long time,“ or, “when everything is considered.“ It is often followed by a comma. Here are some sentences with this idiom:
- We worked hard, and in the end, we achieved our goal.
- In the end, everything is going to be fine.
- All will turn out well in the end.
- In the end we decided not to buy it.
- I waited for a bus for an hour and, in the end, I decided to take a cab.
At the end
At the end is most commonly used followed by of, to refer to the end of a specific noun. This noun can be a physical object (book), a period of time (day), an event (class, game, concert), a place (street, avenue), or something more abstract (life).
Here are some sentences with at the end + of:
- I’ll meet you here at the end of the concert.
- At the end of the class, the teacher said she wanted to talk to me.
- We all went home at the end of the game.
- There’s this gigantic house at the end of the street.
- I will have an answer at the end of the day, ok?
- At the end of his life, he had no regrets.
- Put a period at the end of every sentence.
- I pay the phone bill at the end of each month.
- There is a brick building at the end of the road.
- My boss asked me to stay one more hour at the end of my shift.
- The bathroom is the last door on the left at the end of the corridor.
Note: sometimes we can also omit the of with at the end, for example at the end of a sentence, but even so it is possible to see that we are talking about the end of something.
• This book is amazing, but I can’t tell you what happens at the end.
Also, remember that one of the best ways to learn them is by watching how they are used, when reading a book or watching a movie or a series. Notice how they are used in context.
Let’s have some practice now.