Learn All About Adjectives in English Grammar!

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Adjectives

Adjectives are something that we constantly use in our everyday life but sometimes we end up making mistakes related to them. Whether you are working on your basic grammar or preparing for competitive exams, learning basic concepts like adjectives will surely help you strengthen your understanding of English. So, this blog brings you a comprehensive guide on what adjectives are, their examples, types and uses.

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What are Adjectives?

Adjectives are those words which are used to describe and express some quality of a noun or a pronoun. In a sense, adjectives provide additional information regarding a noun or a pronoun. 

 Examples of Adjectives

  1. Arya made a beautiful painting
  2. She bought a small house for herself on the outskirts of the city. 
  3. Everest is the highest mountain peak in the world. 
  4. Be careful because the river is too deep
  5. Rhea sang confidently

In the sentences given below, the bold and underlined words are adjectives. Words like beautiful, small, highest, deep, confidentiality are all used to describe the noun or pronoun that it accompanies. 

Adjective
Courtesy: Gfycat

Adjectives Usage & Examples

Adjectives can mainly be used in two ways. And you need to understand both if you want to get a good hold over their usage. 

  1. Attributively

When adjectives are used attributively, they are called Attributive Adjectives. When an adjective is placed immediately before the noun, it becomes attributive.  

  1. Predictively

When adjectives are placed after the noun i.e., predictively, they are called Predicative Adjectives. Note that Predicatives are not placed immediately after a noun but are followed by a verb. 

Examples of Attributive and Predicative

To make it easier to understand let us go through some examples of Attributive and Predicative Adjectives. 

Attributive Adjectives Predicative Adjectives
Beautiful boy He is beautiful.
Narrow road That road is narrow.
Kind person He is kind
Shallow waters The water is shallow.
Tallest mountain That mountain is tall

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Degrees

As we know, adjectives are used to describe attributes of a noun or pronoun. Now, these can be used to merely describe the quality of a noun or as a mode of comparison. And on the basis of this difference, there are three degrees. Let us have a closer look at these three degrees. 

Positive

In its positive degree, adjectives merely refer to a particular quality of a noun. It used to simply receive and now and not compare. Therefore, this is the simplest degree of adjectives. 

Example:  

She is a good person.
Ahaana is a talented artist

In the above-given sentences, there is no comparison that is being made. “Good” and “talented” are simply used to describe the noun with which it concerns. 

Comparative

As the name suggests, the comparative degree of Adjectives is used as a mode of comparison. It’s used to compare two things and is often followed by the word “than”. By adding “er” to an adjective of positive degree, you get an adjective of comparative degree. Like, strong + er = Stronger, smart + er = Smarter, etc. And you can also place the word “more” before a normal adjective and turn it into its comparative form. Like, more beautiful, more smart, more intelligent, etc. 

Example:

This perfume is stronger than the other one. 
Anya is more kind than other children of her age. 

In these two sentences, there is clearly some comparison which is happening and it’s made possible through the use of Adjectives in a specific way and therefore they are of the comparative degree. 

Superlative

The superlative degree is the highest degree of adjectives. They denote the highest degree of quality. In this degree, a comparison can be made between two or more nouns to denote one as the best of something. Mostly, by adding “est” to an adjective of positive degree, you get the superlative degree. Like, smart + est = Smartest,

brave + est = Bravest, etc. Also, you can also place the word “most” before a normal one and turn it into its superlative degree like most beautiful, most intelligent, etc. 

Examples:

This is the coldest day of the year. 
She is the most amazing writer that the world has ever seen. 

In these two sentences, “coldest” and “most amazing” are the superlative degrees, i.e., the highest degree. 

Positive Comparative Superlative
Great Greater Greatest
Small Smaller Smallest
Rich Richer Richest
Fast Faster Fastest

Types of Adjectives 

Now comes the different types of adjectives. There are seven main categories which are explained below with examples:

Descriptive Adjectives

As the name suggests, descriptive adjectives are those which describe a quality or feature of the concerned noun or pronoun. These include good, bad, beautiful, smart, brave, all come under the category of descriptive.

Examples:

Arya made a beautiful painting. 
She bought a small house for herself on the outskirts of the city. 

Quantitative Adjectives

Quantitative Adjectives are those which describe the quantitative aspect of the concerned noun. All the numbers, and words like whole, lot, many are all quantitative type. 

Examples:

There are eight planets in the solar system. 
I ate the whole cake by myself. 

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Demonstrative Adjectives

Demonstrative Adjectives are used to refer to the position of the concerned noun. This, that, those, these come under demonstrative.

Examples :

This pen is mine. 
Those are Jack’s children. 

Possessive Adjectives

Possessive Adjectives are those which show who or what possesses the noun before which it’s placed. His, her, mine, their, pure are all Possessive Adjectives. 

Examples:

That’s my umbrella. 
That pen is mine

Interrogative Adjectives

Interrogative Adjectives are those adjectives which are used to ask a question related to the concerned now. In the English language, there are three interrogative adjective examples and those are what, which and whose. 

Examples:

Whose paint colours are these?
Which country do you wish to visit?

Distributive Adjectives

Distributive Adjectives are used to refer to an individual item of a certain group or to refer to every item of a group. Examples of these include each, neither, either, every, belong to the category of distributive.

Examples:

Each of these paintings is made by the same artist. 
I don’t like either of these fruits. 

Articles

We know that there are three articles in the English language a, an and the. But did you know that these three can also be considered as adjectives? The point is that these are used to refer to a noun and articles and thus can also be considered as adjectives. 

Examples:

The lotus temple is a heritage site of India. 
A satellite was launched last night. 

Exercises

Now that you have gone through all the categories and degrees of adjectives, let us test that knowledge that you have gained. 

  1. She is the most (brave/bravest) person that I know. 
  2. He left her at the (worse/worst) time possible. 
  3. I am (wiser/more wiser) than that student. 
  4. There are a (little/few) books on Shakespeare in the college library. 
  5. Book (one/first) of the series is about pronouns. 

Solutions

  1. Brave
  2. Worst
  3. Wiser
  4. Few
  5. One

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Thus, we hope that you learned all about adjectives with this blog. Preparing for exams like TOEFL or IELTS? Our Leverage Live experts are here to guide you through your preparation process to ensure that you ace your exam with your dream score! Sign up for a free demo session with us now!

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