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Adjectives

Adjective
• Is a word that tells us more about a noun
• Qualifies or modifies a noun (a big noun)
• Can be used before a noun (I like Chinese
food) or after certain verbs (it is hard)
• We can often use two or more adjectives
together (a beautiful young French lady)
Types of Adjective
• Interrogative Adjective
• Determiner
• Articles
• Noun modifier
• Compound Adjectives
• Numerical Adjectives
• Indefinite Adjectives
Arrangement of Adjectives
1. Article / Determiner
2. Quantity
3. Quality/Opinion
4. Size and Shape
5. Age
6. Color
7. Origin
8. Material
9. Qualifier
10. Head noun
1. Determiner
• Words that are used with nouns to clarify the
noun
• Articles and other limiters
• A, an, the
• This, that, those, these
• My, your, his, her, their
• Numbers
2. Quality
• Explains what you think about something
e.g.
silly, beautiful, horrible, difficult
He’s a silly fool.
She’s a smart woman.
3. Size and shape
• Adjectives subject to objective measure
e.g.
large, round, tiny, enormous, little
This is a big house.
I live in a small house.
4. Age
• Adjectives denoting age
e.g.
ancient, new, young, old
I am an old teacher.
She is a young student.
5. Color
• Adjectives denoting color
e.g.
blue, pink, reddish, grey
I want the black cat.
He wants the grey dog.
6. Origin
• Describes where something comes from
e.g.
French, lunar, American, eastern, Greek
He wants a pair of American jeans.
She wants that French handbag.
7. Material
• Denominal adjectives denoting what
something is made of
e.g.
woolen, metallic, wooden
7. Qualifier
• Final limiter, often regarded as part of the
noun
e.g.
rocking chair, hunting cabin, passenger car,
book cover
Adjective Usage
1. “Fast, fun, new, old, red, ugly” are all
adjectives. They describe a noun.
2. Adjectives can come BEFORE the NOUN (ADJ
+ N)
e.g.
It’s an expensive bicycle.
It’s a racing bicycle.
It’s a red car.
Adjective Usage
3. Adjectives can come AFTER a BE verb. (BE +
ADJ)
e.g.
The butterfly is pretty.
The butterfly is blue.
Butterflies are interesting.
Adjective Usage
4. Nouns can also work as adjectives. A noun
can help describe an object.
e.g.
It’s a business meeting.
It’s a school conference.
They’re having a job interview.
Adjective Usage
5. Present participles (ing verbs) can also work
as adjectives.
e.g.
Baseball is an exciting game.
It’s an interesting game.
Baseball is interesting.
Adjective Usage
6. Past participles can also work as adjectives.
e.g.
The man is tired.
The exhausted man fell asleep.
7. Adjectives can be hyphenated.
e.g.
The computer-generated error message
made the program freeze.
My friend isn’t very good at do-it-yourself
projects.
Adjective Usage
8. Numbers can be used as adjectives.
e.g.
That’s a three-ton truck.
The man is a 37 year old trucker.
9. Adjectives can be used to compare things.
e.g.
Cats are softer than dogs.
My cat is the cutest cat I know.
Degrees of Adjectives

Positive, Comparative, Superlative


Positive Comparative Superlative
Rich Richer Richest

Lovely Lovelier Loveliest

Beautiful More beautiful Most beautiful


Irregular Comparative and Superlative Forms
Good Better Best
Bad Worse Worst
Little Less Least
Much More Most
Many
Some
Far Further furthest
Bryan Garner’s Absolute Adjectives
Absolute impossible principal
Adequate inevitable stationary
Chief irrevocable main
Complete minor unavoidable
Devoid unbroken paramount
Entire perpetual unique
Fatal universal whole
Final preferable ideal
Positions of Adjectives
1. Attributive Adjective
• Placed just before the noun it modifies
eg. Magical moment
everlasting love
pretty girls
2. Appositive Position
• Explains the noun/pronoun
eg.
The Reyer family, tired and happy,
returned home from a trip.
3. Predicative Position
• The adjective is a part of the predicate but
function as a modifier of the subject
eg.
The sea is calm tonight.