Adjectives in English (2022)

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Categories,use and formation of adjectives in English

Index : TypesofadjectiveUseof adjectivesAdjectivesin theplural
FormingadjectivesComparisonof adjectivesGradationofadjectives


What is anadjective?

Anadjectiveis a word that defines, qualifies or modifies the meaningof a noun, or more rarelyof a pronoun. It expresses a quality orattribute of the word it qualifies. There are two main categoriesofadjectives:

  1. determiningadjectives,
  2. descriptiveadjectives, which can be either qualifyingadjectives or classifyingadjectives .
(Video) Adjectives

Typesof Adjective : determining or descriptive

1. Determiningadjectives:

Also called limitingadjectives, determining adjectives are words that are generally classedin the family of determiners,and are dealt with elsewhere: there is alimited number of these words. They are notably possessive adjectives (suchas my, their),numerals andquantifiers(such as one, two,three,every, many),demonstrativeadjectives (such as thisor that),interrogativeadjectives(such as which).To learn about the use of these determining adjectives, pleaseconsult the appropriate pages.

2. Descriptive adjectives :qualifying orclassifying

When we talk of adjectives, we generally tend to mean "descriptive adjectives".These are adjectives such as big,English, wonderful, words thatdescribe thepermanant or perceived qualities of a noun; their number is unlimited.New descriptive adjectivesenter the language every day, often in the fertile world of slang.

There are twocategoriesof descriptive adjectives;

  • 2.1.qualificativeor qualifyingadjectives, such as big,nice, complicated which express thepassing or perceived qualities of a noun, and
  • 2.2.classifyingadjectives (includingabsolute adjectives) such as married,second, hydraulic, unique, dead which express permanentqualities orabsolutes.

Qualifiyingadjectivesare "gradable",i.e. it is possible to graduate their intensity, by the addition of anadverb ofdegree, such as very,quite, enough; most qualifying adjectives can also be putinto comparative or superlative forms (big, bigger, biggest).
Classifyingadjectives cannot normally be graded: a personis either marriedor not, or deador not; he or she cannot be "very married", nor"more dead"than another person, at least not under normal usage of the words.
That being said, many adjectives can be usedeither as qualifying adjectives, or as classifyingadjectives, depending on the context. Take the example of the adjectiveold.


(Video) What is an Adjective | Parts of Speech Song for Kids | Jack Hartmann

  1. Mycar isvery old(qualifying, with a noun)
  2. He is old(qualifying,with apronoun) see Pronouns)
  3. The oldcomputer was much quieter than the newmodel (classifying)

Inthe first two examples above, oldis a perceived quality, and therefore gradable, in the third old has an absolutevalue, with the meaning of former or previous.
See gradationand comparison ofadjectivesbelow.

Use ofadjectives : attributive or predicative

Adjectives are used in two main ways; they can either be attributiveor they can be predicative.


This is the most common use of adjectives, standing next to a noun inanoun phrase.In English, simple and complex adjectives almost always comebeforethe noun .


  1. The bigmetal box
  2. Mydear old grandfather .
  3. A verymodern plastic dish.
  4. An easilyrecognisable face.
  5. A pinkand green dress
  6. Anot-too-infrequent event.

Exceptions:adjectives that follownouns or pronouns. (postpositiveadjectives)

There are only a very small number of exceptions,

  • a A few adjectives such as concernedinvolved,presentand responsible,which have a particular meaning when they come after a noun.
  • b.Some adjectives, notably participles, which can follow a noun when theystand as the contraction of an unexpressed relative clause. (examples 3& 4)
  • c. Adjectives that qualify pronouns (examples 5& 6) must follow.
  • d. Cases in which oldand tallfollow the noun. (example 7)
  • e.The other important case when anadjective willfollow a noun is when the adjective is postmodified by a prepositionalphrase. (examples 8 & 9)


  1. All thepeople concerned were told to leave the room.
  2. Thechildren present did not like the show. (=The children who werepresent ....)
  3. He's thelast man standing.
  4. There areonly three cakes left.
  5. I want togive you something special
  6. Thatwould be quite understandable to anyone intelligent.
  7. The manis two metres tall. I'm 20 years old.
  8. I bought all thebottles leftin the shop.
  9. He was a man proudof his success

For details on the ordering of adjectives within a noungroup, seeadjectiveorder.

Predicative adjectives

Adjectives are said to be predicative when they are used as thecomplement of the verbto be, or other similar verbs such as get,become, grow,etc.

(Video) How to Use Adjectives in English - English Grammar Course


  1. Theresult was magnificent.
  2. My girlfriend isbeautiful .
  3. The weather isgetting colder.
  4. I grew fonder ofLondon after living there for a month.

Adjectives in the plural

In English, adjectives nevertake a plural inflexion (s)whether they are used attributively or predicatively.

The same rule applies to some adjectivesusedas nouns.
We talk about thepoor, or theliving, orthe wounded We cannot say the poors or the livings, or the woundeds.

Example:The injured and the dead wereevacuated by ambulance.

On the other hand, with colours, specially when referring toteams, adjectives used as nouns do take a plural s.

Example:The final is between thereds andthe blues.

Formationof adjectives in English

Many adjectives are lexicalwords in their own right, i.e. they existindependently of any other word, or are the root word of a word family.For example good, bad,ugly.
Other adjectives are inflectedforms of other words, derived notably from verbs. For example charming, lost.Other adjectives can be formed from nouns, for example beautiful(from beauty)or motionless(frommotion),or even from other adjectives (for example yellowish).
One of the beauties of the English language isthe simplicity with which words can be formed from other words: allthat is needed is to add the appropriate ending, and a new word ismade. Here are some examples.


(Video) Adjectives | Adjectives Song for Children to Rock Out to! | English Grammar Song for Children

  1. Unthinkable,doable, mendable, possible, plausible - with -able or -ible
  2. Careless, fruitless, homeless, motionless - with less
  3. Beautiful, hopeful, wonderful, awful, blissful - with ful
  4. Soggy, foggy, lazy, stormy,skinny, bloody, - with -y
  5. Smallish, greenish, darkish, - with -ish
  6. Distinguished, bored, displaced, contented, squared - with -ed
  7. Challenging, alarming, amazing, exciting - with -ing

Comparisonof adjectives

Many qualifying adjectives can be used in a comparativeor a superlativeform.In most cases, the comparative form of an adjective is made with theword more,and the superlative form with the word most.
But with most common short monosyllabicadjectives, and some two-syllable adjectives, the comparative is madeby adding the ending -er,and the superlative with the ending -est.There are twocommon adjectives with irregular comparative and superlative forms: good, better, best,and bad, worse, worst.


  1. Careful,morecareful, most careful
  2. Difficult, moredifficult, most difficult, Certain, more certain, most certain
  3. Hard,harder, hardest, Black, blacker, blackest, Old, older, oldest,
    Clever, cleverer, cleverest,
  4. Large,larger, largest (justadd -r and -st to adjectivesending ine)
  5. Big,bigger, biggest , hot, hotter, hottest - Final p t k b d gn& m, are doubled when standing alone after a shortvowel
  6. Hard, harder , warmwarmer, quiet quieter-Final p t k bd g n& m, are notdoubled when following another consonant or a long vowel or diphthong.
  7. Pretty, prettier,prettiest , heavy, heavier, heaviest -Adjectivesending in y have inflectedforms in -ier and -iest.

Gradationof adjectives

Qualifying adjectivescan be graded by adverbsof intensity or of degree, and by some other adverbs. Themost common adverbs of intensity are:
quite,rather, fairly, very, extremely, highly
These adverbs come before the adjective. But note thefollowing points:

  • Enough:qualifying an adjective,enough comes, exceptionally, afterthe word it qualifies (examples 6 and 7). (Qualifying a noun,enoughcomes beforethe word it qualifiees) See Enough
  • Ratherand quite :used attributively, quiteand rathercan either follow the article, or come before the article: i.e. we canchoose between a rathergood book and rathera good book, or quite a nice guyand a quite nice guy.With rather,the choice is generally open, with quiteit is more usual to say quitea than aquite.

Adjectives that are in the comparative form canbe modified by intensifiers such as much, far andsometimes by adverbs of degree (examples 8).
Some kinds of adjectives, notably participles,can be modified by a wide range of adverbs (examples 9 and 10).


  1. I'mquite certain Ileft my hat in the car.
  2. This is a rather good restaurant ORthis is rather agood restaurant.
  3. It's very clear that you have read the book already.
  4. This is a highly complicated situation to be in.
  5. This situation is highly complicated.
  6. OK, that was a clear enough reply.
  7. Is the door wide enough to get through ?
  8. That was much better than last time. It's rather better thanI expected.
  9. They are a newly married couple.
  10. He madea carefully worded statement.

Classifying adjectivescan not normally be graded, though there are some circumstances wheregrading is possible . Compare the three examples below usingtheclassifying adjective electric. Normally somethingis electricor it is not electric;it can't be veryelectric or quiteelectric...... However it can be partly electric.


(Video) Adjectives for Kids | What is an adjective? | Learn all about adjectives! | Grades 1-3

  1. OK:This new car is electric.
  2. Not OK: This new car is veryelectric.
  3. OK. This new hybrid car is partly electric.


What is an adjective for enough? ›

Enough is an adjective that describes something that is adequate for an intended purpose. Enough is also used as an adverb to mean sufficiently or fully. Enough also has senses as a pronoun and an interjection. Enough describes something as being adequate or sufficient.

What is the example of enough? ›

Example Sentences

Adverb I couldn't run fast enough to catch up with her. She's old enough to know better. Are you rich enough to retire? That's good enough for me.

Is enough an adjective of quantity? ›

In the sentences 1 – 5 above, the adjectives some, no, little, much, and enough are adjectives of quantity or amount since they denote quantity of the nouns they precede—money, sugar, milk, time and food respectively.

What are adjectives question answer? ›

Adjectives usually precede the noun or pronoun they modify. Adjectives do not have to agree in number or gender with the nouns they describe. Adjectives answer the following questions: What kind?, How many?, or Which ones? Example: Tom bought a used car.

What does enough enough mean? ›

Phrase. enough is enough. One should be satisfied; nothing additional is required.

What are adjectives examples? ›

What Is an Adjective? Adjectives are words that describe the qualities or states of being of nouns: enormous, doglike, silly, yellow, fun, fast. They can also describe the quantity of nouns: many, few, millions, eleven.

Why do we use enough? ›

Enough is a determiner, a pronoun or an adverb. We use enough to mean 'as much as we need or want'.

Is not Enough example? ›

The phrase “not enough” is obviously a negative form of that – and it shows that things are not satisfactory! For example: “There is not enough bread for the entire group to eat.” It is usually used to indicate that the level is less than satisfactory – it would not be used if it was in excess.

Has enough meaning? ›

If you say that you have had enough, you mean that you are unhappy with a situation and you want it to stop.

Is enough a adjective or adverb? ›

Enough means “the necessary amount.” It can be used as an adjective and it can also be used as an adverb.

What is enough grammar? ›

The word enough can be used as an adjective, an adverb or with a noun. It can even be used as a pronoun. Enough with an adjective. She wasn't tall enough to become a flight attendant. This piece of writing isn't good enough.

What type of adverb is enough? ›

Resources for learning English
Adverb of degreeModifyingExample
almostverbShe has almost finished.
veryadverbShe is running very fast.
tooadverbYou are walking too slowly.
enoughadverbYou are running fast enough.
3 more rows

What are adjective 25 examples? ›

25 Most Common Adjectives
  • good.
  • new.
  • first.
  • last.
  • long.
  • great.
  • little.
  • own.

What are the 10 types of adjectives? ›

The 10 types of adjectives are as follows:
  • Adjective of Quality.
  • Adjective of Quantity.
  • Adjective of Number.
  • Demonstrative Adjective.
  • Distributive Adjective.
  • Interrogative Adjective.
  • Possessive Adjective.
  • Emphasizing Adjective.

What means I'm enough? ›

You are enough means that you don't have to strive to become more worthy, more valid, more acceptable, or more loved. You already are all of those things.

What does true enough mean? ›

idiom. correct or accurate but not completely explaining something: It's true enough that he had doubts about the project, but we have to look further to understand why he resigned.

Could get enough meaning? ›

DEFINITIONS1. to like something very much and want a lot of it.

What are adjectives 20 examples? ›

Examples of adjectives
  • They live in a beautiful house.
  • Lisa is wearing a sleeveless shirt today. This soup is not edible.
  • She wore a beautiful dress.
  • He writes meaningless letters.
  • This shop is much nicer.
  • She wore a beautiful dress.
  • Ben is an adorable baby.
  • Linda's hair is gorgeous.

What are the 50 examples of adjective? ›

Top 50 adjectives in English
1. AbleHaving what is required (e.g., money or skills) to do something When I was young, I was able to stand on my head.
2. AngryBeing very annoyed or upset If I'm late for class again, the teacher is going to be angry.
58 more rows
10 Nov 2022

What are the 5 types of adjectives? ›

What are the types of adjectives?
  • Possessive Adjectives.
  • Interrogative Adjectives.
  • Demonstrative Adjectives.
  • Compound Adjectives.

What is too enough? ›

Lesson Summary

Too and enough indicate a degree (or amount) in English sentences. too = more than necessary. enough = the necessary amount. not enough = less than necessary.

What is not enough? ›

1 inadequate, scanty, deficient.

How do you use not enough? ›

We use not enough + noun to mean less than we want or need of something. There aren't enough chairs for everyone. We haven't got enough money.

What word means not enough? ›

inadequate. adjectivedefective, insufficient, incompetent. bare. barren.

Who Use enough? ›

We normally only use enough of when it is followed by a determiner or a pronoun (a/an/the, this/that, my/your/his, you/them, etc.). There isn't enough of that bread to make sandwiches for everyone. I've seen enough of his work to be able to recommend him. There's enough of us to make a difference.

Has done enough meaning? ›

Want no more of something, as in I've had enough of their quarreling. This phrase uses enough in the sense of “an adequate amount,” which is intended ironically to mean “a more than sufficient amount.” [c.

What is enough already mean? ›

DEFINITIONS1. used for saying that you want something to stop. Enough already!

Are enough or is enough? ›

If "enough" means a sufficient quantity of people in a countable sense, it would be "are": "1 or 2 friends are enough to move the couch." If "enough" means sufficiency for a qualitative criterion, it would be "is": "1 or 2 friends is enough to make me happy."

Would that be enough meaning? ›

that should be enough: that will probably suffice, that is likely to be enough. idiom.

Is enough adverb of manner? ›

The adverb enough belongs to the group of English adverbs of degree , just as 'almost, completely', or 'extremely' also do. However, it has peculiarities in its position in the sentence, i.e. the word order.

Is any an adjective? ›

Adjective any person who comes in the store today is eligible for the discount Adverb The food there is never any good. He won't be any happier there than he was here. I could not walk any farther.

Is enough a adverb of degree? ›

'Enough' can be used as an adverb or a determiner. When it's used as an adverb, 'enough' means 'to a necessary degree'. In a sentence, it's placed after the adjective or adverb that it modifies - not before it like other adverbs do. You can use 'enough' to express something in a positive or negative way.

What are 100 examples of an adjective? ›

100 Adjectives, Comparatives and Superlatives List
10 more rows

What are the 100 figure of speech? ›

Some common figures of speech are alliteration, anaphora, antimetabole, antithesis, apostrophe, assonance, hyperbole, irony, metonymy, onomatopoeia, paradox, personification, pun, simile, synecdoche, and understatement.

What are 100 examples of adverbs? ›

abnormally absentmindedly accidentally actually adventurously afterwards almost always annually anxiously arrogantly awkwardly bashfully beautifully bitterly bleakly blindly blissfully boastfully boldly bravely briefly brightly briskly broadly busily calmly carefully carelessly cautiously certainly cheerfully clearly ...

What are 3 adjectives together called? ›

"Cumulative adjectives" are two or more adjectives that build on one another and together modify a noun. They're consecutive. They are also called "unit modifiers." Indeed, they work together as a unit and are not independent descriptions of the noun.

IS OUR an adjective? ›

A possessive adjective ("my," "your," "his," "her," "its," "our," "their") is similar or identical to a possessive pronoun; however, it is used as an adjective and modifies a noun or a noun phrase, as in the following sentences: I can't complete my assignment because I don't have the textbook.

What is a adjective Class 8? ›

Hint: An adjective is a term that gives details about a noun. It is used to "describe" or "modify" a noun. Examples of adjectives are: good, large, wonderful, smart, nice, bad, happy, fast etc. Complete answer: A word that qualifies a noun or a pronoun is called an adjective.

What is an adjective for Class 4? ›

An adjective is a word which modifies a noun or pronoun by adding something. It is used to describe a noun or pronoun and tells about them. examples: What kind of girl is Priya? Priya is a beautiful girl.

What is class 10 adjective example? ›

Adjectives or describing words are words that modify a noun or a pronoun by describing, identifying, or quantifying words. It normally indicates quality, size, shape, duration, feelings, contents, and more about a noun or pronoun. For example: (1) My mom is a pretty lady.

What can I say instead of more than enough? ›

  • excess.
  • glut.
  • great quantity.
  • more than enough.
  • overflow.
  • overmuch.
  • oversupply.
  • plenty.

What's another word for more than enough? ›

Some common synonyms of plentiful are abundant, ample, and copious. While all these words mean "more than sufficient without being excessive," plentiful implies a great or rich supply.

What is another word for Had enough? ›

synonyms for had enough
  • appalled.
  • outraged.
  • queasy.
  • tired.
  • unhappy.
  • weary.
  • abhorred.
  • displeased.

How do you say something is enough? ›

Synonyms of sufficient
  1. adequate.
  2. acceptable.
  3. reasonable.
  4. satisfactory.
  5. sufficing.
  6. tolerable.
  7. decent.
  8. all right.

What is opposite of enough enough? ›

Opposite of a sufficient amount of. insufficient. inadequate. limited.

Is more than enough meaning? ›

Adjective. Being plentiful or more than enough in quantity. Being over and above what is necessary, or what must be used or reserved. Noun. An excessive amount of something.

What is the meaning of large enough? ›

Large enough means the ability to get from L to G with some “small” tinkering, where meaning of “small” depends on context. Sample 1.

How do you say too much? ›

  1. boundless.
  2. disproportionate.
  3. dissipated.
  4. dizzying.
  5. enormous.
  6. exaggerated.
  7. exorbitant.
  8. extra.

What are adjectives 10 examples? ›

10 adjectives examples are Ashamed, Adorable, Attractive, Beautiful, Awful, Aggressive, Cruel, Clever, Tasty, Jealous.

How do you make adjectives? ›

We can form adjectives from nouns by adding suffixes to a noun. The Adjectives that are formed by adding -y or -al or -ial as a suffix are given below in the table. If the noun has an 'e' in the ending, it is removed and -y or -al or -ial is added as a suffix to the noun to form an adjective.

What is the Old English word for enough? ›

enough (adj.)

1300, from Old English genog "sufficient in quantity or number," from Proto-Germanic compound *ganog "sufficient" (source also of Old Saxon ginog, Old Frisian enoch, Dutch genoeg, Old High German ginuog, German genug, Old Norse gnogr, Gothic ganohs).


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