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Adjective Placement

When using more than one adjective to describe a noun, place the adjectives in the following order before the noun.

 

NOTE: We usually use no more than three adjectives preceding a noun.

 

1. Opinion

Example: an interesting book, a boring lecture
 

2. Dimension

Example: a big apple, a thin wallet
 

3. Age

Example: a new car, a modern building, an ancient ruin
 

4. Shape

Example: a square box, an oval mask, a round ball
 

5. Color

Example: a pink hat, a blue book, a black coat
 

6. Origin

Example: some Italian shoes, a Canadian town, an American car
 

7. Material

Example: a wooden box, a woolen sweater, a plastic toy
 

Here are some examples of nouns modified with three adjectives in the correct order based on the list above. Notice that the adjectives are not separated by commas.

 

  • A wonderful old Italian clock. (opinion - age - origin)
     
  • A big square blue box. (dimension - shape - color)
     
  • A disgusting pink plastic ornament. (opinion - color - material)
     
  • Some slim new French trousers. (dimension - age - origin)

 

Placement of Adverbs

Adverb of Manner:
 

(e.g.: slowly, carefully, awfully)

These adverbs are put behind the direct object (or behind the verb if there's no direct object).
 

subject

verb (s)

direct object

adverb

He

drove

the car

carefully.

He

drove

 

carefully.


Adverbs of Place:
 

(e.g.: here, there, behind, above)

Like adverbs of manner, these adverbs are put behind the direct object or the verb.
 

subject

verb (s)

direct object

adverb

I

didn't see

him

here.

He

stayed

 

behind.


Adverbs of Time
 

(e.g.: recently, now, then, yesterday)

Adverbs of time are usually put at the end of the sentence.
 

subject

verb (s)

indirect object

direct object

time

I

will tell

you

the story

tomorrow.


If you don't want to put emphasis on the time, you can also put the adverb of time at the beginning of the sentence.
 

time

subject

verb (s)

indirect object

direct object

Tomorrow

I

will tell

you

the story.


Adverbs of Frequency
 

(e.g.: always, never, seldom, usually)
 

Adverbs of frequency are put directly before the main verb. If 'be' is the main verb and there is no auxiliary verb, adverbs of frequency are put behind 'be'. If there is an auxiliary verb, however, adverbs of frequency are put before 'be'.
 

subject

auxiliary/be

adverb

main verb

object, place or time

I

 

often

go swimming

in the evenings.

He

doesn't

always

play

tennis.

We

are

usually

 

here in summer.

I

have

never

been

abroad

    




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