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ORDER OF ADJECTIVES

OPINION SIZE - AGE - SHAPE- COLOUR - ORIGIN - MATERIAL PURPOSE NOUN

COMMAS:
Between Coordinate Adjectives
Coordinate adjectives are those that carry equal weightlike co-workers in an organization. It doesn't
matter which comes first because they both have equal emphasis. It does not matter which order coordinate
adjectives appear in.

EXAMPLE:
Willy had a long, bushy beard.
Willy had a bushy, long beard.

It does not matter which comes first: long or bushy. These are coordinate adjectives. Notice the comma between
the adjectives.

NOT Between Cumulative Adjectives


Cumulative adjectives build their meaning in one particular order. You can not switch them
around and still make sense.

EXAMPLE:
Willy wore his black basketball shoes.
Willy wore his basketball black shoes. (This sounds silly, doesn't it?)

The order of black and basketball does matter; black must appear first in the sentence. These are
cumulative adjectives: they build their meaning in one order only. Notice there is no comma
between them.

Arrange the adjectives in the right order:

1.- There was a terrifying huge black dog outside the house.
(a dog, black, terrifying, huge)

2.- I gave her some beautiful white cotton handkerchiefs


for her birthday.
(some handkerchiefs, beautiful, white, cotton)

3.- There was a wonderful old Impressionist picture hanging on the wall.
(a picture, old, wonderful, Impressionist)

4.- Have you seen a pair of brown leather gloves lying on the floor?
(a pair of gloves, brown, leather)

5.- She was wearing a winter woollen sweater .


(a sweater, winter, woolen)

6.- There is a very old Gothic church in this town.


(a church, Gothic, very old)

7.- My mother bought several small blue plastic plates for the picnic.
(several plates, plastic, blue, small)

8.- The fifteen-year-old French girl didnt feel comfortable living with the British family.
(the girl, French, fifteen-year-old)

9.- There were a lot of useless little china ornaments on the shelf.
(a lot of ornaments, china, little, useless)

10.- Why dont you wear your thick fur coat . Its rather cold.
(your coat, thick, fur)
Choose the right option:
1. a a cotton dirty old tie
b. a dirty cotton old tie 5. a. an old wooden square table
c. an old cotton dirty tie b. a square wooden old table
d. a dirty old cotton tie c. an old square wooden table
d. a wooden old square table
2. a. a small Japanese serving
bowl 6. a. a beautiful blue sailing boat
b. a Japanese small serving bowl b. a blue beautiful sailing boat
c. a small serving Japanese bowl c. a sailing beautiful blue boat
d. a serving small Japanese bowl d. a blue sailing beautiful boat

3. a. a red big plastic hat 7. a. a carving steel new knife


b. a big red plastic hat b. a new steel carving knife
c. a plastic big red hat c. a steel new carving knife
d. a big plastic red hat d. a new carving steel knife

4. a. an new French exciting band 8. a. a small Canadian thin lady


b. a French new exciting band b. a Canadian small thin lady
c. an exciting French new band c. a small thin Canadian lady
d. an exciting new French band d. a thin small Canadian lady

Order the words in the boxes.

1 ___________________________________. 8 ___________________________________.

my teacher old horrible maths dirty new a perfect system

2 ___________________________________. 9 ___________________________________.

black small box ebony a old 18th century a Scottish fantastic castle

3 ___________________________________. 10 ___________________________________.

man a short friendly young a businessman horrible greedy

4 ___________________________________. 11 ___________________________________.

old our headmaster boring a big old brown bear

5 ___________________________________. 12 ___________________________________.

wooden dark a table long citizen self-righteous a middle-class

6 ___________________________________. 13 ___________________________________.

city a Italian beautiful old spoilt boy nasty a little

7 ___________________________________. 14 ___________________________________.

arts nice teacher new our French American gorgeous blond-haired a girl
EXERCISE 1
1. There Was a terrifying huge black dog
2. I gave her some beautiful white cotton handkerchiefs
3. There was a wonderful old Impressionist picture
4. Have you seen a pair of brown leather gloves
5. She was wearing a winter woollen sweater
6. There is a very old Gothic church
7. My mother bought several small blue plastic plates
8. The fifteen-year-old French girl
9. There were a lot of useless little china ornaments
10. Why dont you wear your thick fur coat

EXERCISE 2
1. d
2. a
3. b
4. d
5. c
6. a
7. b
8. c

EXERCISE 3
1. My horrible dirty old maths teacher
2. a small old black ebony box
3. a friendly short young man
4. our boring old headmaster
5. a long dark wooden table
6. a beautiful old Italian city
7. our nice new French arts teacher
8. a perfect new system
9. a fantastic 18th century Scottish castle
10. A horrible greedy businessman
11. a big old brown bear
12. a self-righteous middle-class citizen
13. a nasty spoilt little boy
14. a gorgeous blond-haired American girl