Inglês em UsoVocabulário de Inglês

“At the end” or “in the end”?

On Facebook, people have been asking me what the difference is between “at the end” and “in the end“. As not all Inglês na Ponta da Língua blog readers are on Facebook, I decided to share the answer here as well. So, keep reading to learn this.

The use of these two combinations is not as difficult as you may think. All you have to do is to understand how they are actually used in English. The problem is solved by just reading examples and learning the meaning of each combination. So, let us first see some examples with “at the end“:

  • 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” is always used to talk about the end of something (a class, a game, a concert, a street, an avenue, etc.). “At the end” is the opposite of “at the beginning“. Another interesting thing is that the whole combination is “at the end of“. That is, what you have to learn is that in English it’s always going to be “at the end of“. Read the sentences above again and notice that in all of them there is an “of” after “at the end“.

Now, “in the end” is always “in the end“. There is no “of” after it. The combination “in the end” means “finally“. In Brazilian Portuguese, we say “no fim“, “no fim das contas“, “no final“, “depois de tudo“. Read the examples:

  • In the end, they shook hands and made up.
  • I’m sure we’ll succeed in the end.
  • In the end, it’ll all be the same thing.
  • All will turn out well in the end.
  • In the end we decided not to buy it.

As you can see, both combinations are really used in different contexts and with different meanings. Always keep in mind that they use “at the end of” as the opposite of “at the beginning of” and “in the end” as a synonym of “finally“. Once you’ve learned this, you can even use them together:

  • In the end, we bumped into each other at the end of the concert and came back home together.

Well, that’s it for today, guys. I hope you’ve enjoyed this tip. Take care. Oh! If you’re on Facebook, go to and like our fanpage. You’re going to learn much more in there.

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