We're cheating slightly on this one -- pepper is a spice, not an herb. But it's also probably the only thing on this list that's used more often than thyme, and it's an absolutely necessary ingredient to have in any kitchen. Though we're mostly familiar with it as a finely ground up mixture that's paired with salt in holiday-themed shakers, pepper begins its life as a peppercorn grown on a bush.
Whether freshly ground from peppercorns or from a shaker, pepper can be added to just about any dish. A lot of seasoned cooks know to add pepper at the end of cooking because it works to preserve the more delicate flavors of other herbs used. You can use pepper in the seasoning of tomato sauces, as a salad dressing ingredient and in just about any dish you think to cook up in the kitchen.