Could someone please tell me what the difference between "someone" and "someone else" is?

I heard these sentences many times:

She is talking to someone.

She is talking to someone else.


I want to go somewhere

I want to go somewhere else

  • someone else = the other someone Commented Nov 5, 2017 at 10:57

2 Answers 2


We use else after indefinite pronouns to refer to people or things in addition to the ones we already mentioned.

All the family came, but no one else. If Michael can’t come we’ll ask somebody else. So that's eggs, peas and chips. Do you want anything else?

Here is the link:https://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/en/english-grammar/pronouns/indefinite-pronouns


The usage comes from context of the sentence or conversation, using just 'someone' is setting an initial subject focus:

"I spoke to someone about the repairs."

Whereas using the phrase 'someone else' is introducing a new subject to the conversation:

"... but I had to speak to someone else about the garden."

Generally if you hear 'someone else' then it is implying that there was a previous person as the subject of the conversation before that point.

When used at the start of a conversation, such as in your example, then there may be context that isn't spoken that you should be mindful of. For example "She is talking to someone else" may mean that "she" was originally speaking to a person but is now speaking to a different person.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .