“Too soon” and “to soon” are both used in English, but only one form is grammatically correct. You should make sure you know which form that is, and this article will help you by showing you how they both work (or don’t work, in the case of “to soon”).
Is It To Soon or Too Soon?
Only use “too soon” when you are writing in a way that emphasizes the meaning of “soon.” “To soon” is incorrect because “to” does not correctly modify the adverb. “Too” is an adverb that you can use to modify the meaning of “soon” (an adverb can always modify an adverb).
Here are some examples to show you how “too” works instead of the “to” spelling:
- Correct: I think it’s far too soon, but then again, nobody ever seems to listen to me.
- Incorrect: Don’t you think it’s to soon to say something like that to her?
You can use “too” because it’s an adverb, just like “soon.” Adverbs can modify other adverbs as long as the second adverb has its meaning emphasized (which “too soon” demonstrates).
“To” is a preposition. Prepositions cannot modify adverbs in any way. That’s why only “too” makes sense.
“To soon” is not correct, and you should avoid using it. It is not possible to use prepositions like “to” before an adverb like “soon” and expect it to be modified. “To” simply does not have the same modification properties as “too,” so it does not work.
- Correct: I’m a bit worried that it’s too soon to be doing something like this with her. Do you think it will scare her off?
- Incorrect: It’s always going to be to soon to do stuff like that! That’s why you just have to take the plunge and see what happens.
- Correct: If it’s not too soon, I’d really like to take you on a nice, sunny vacation. How does that sound to you?
- Incorrect: It’s far to soon to know for sure. You’ll have to bear with me while I try to figure out whether there’s any hope left here.
- Correct: Did she say it was too soon to know? I thought they would already have a pretty good idea about it.
- Incorrect: I’m sorry. It was to soon for me to make jokes about such a disastrous event. It won’t happen again.
“Too soon” is the only correct form because of how adverbs interact in sentences. “Too” and “soon” are both adverbs, but “too” is used as a modifier to emphasize the meaning of “soon.” It’s a great way to show that something is happening quicker than expected.
- It’s a bit too soon for you to do any of that. Maybe you should look into it a bit more before you make any tough decisions.
- It’s too soon to joke about that! How dare you! Please, stop going on about it and let the people mourn for a bit longer.
- Nope! It’s too soon! I’m not ready to get back out there yet. I’m still getting over the rough break-up I just had.
- I think it’s too soon for them to have another child. They’re barely able to cope with their current one, after all.
- Don’t you think it’s too soon to be saying the “L” word? I’m not even sure if I will ever be able to say it to you now!
Why Do People Tend To Spell It Wrong?
People frequently spell “to” and “too” incorrectly because of how they sound. If you say them aloud, you’ll find that they both sound almost identical, which is why so many people have a hard time understanding which one should be used at which point.
How To Remember If The Correct Spelling Is “To Soon” or “Too Soon”
“Too soon” is correct, and a useful tip involves the meaning of “too.” As an adverb, “too” means “an excessive amount.” We also know that “too” has “an excessive amount” of “O’s” in its spelling compared with “to,” so it makes sense that it should be the form used.
“Too soon” is the only correct form you should write about. It’s correct because “too” and “soon” are both adverbs. It’s possible for adverbs to modify other adverbs as long as the meaning is intensified. “To soon” is incorrect because prepositions like “to” cannot modify adverbs.
Martin is the founder of Grammarhow.com. With top grades in English and teaching experience at university level, he is on a mission to share all of his knowledge about the English language. Having written thousands of articles, he is an expert at explaining difficult topics in a simple language.
Connect with Martin on LinkedIn.