List of Distributive Adjectives And How to Use Them

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Since you are well familiar with the word adjective. Distributive adjectives are pivotal components of the English language that are used to change nouns. This type of adjective refers to members of a group individually.In this blog, we will help you to understand the definition of distributive adjectives, their function, types of distributive adjectives, and their examples!

Definition of Distributive Adjectives

These adjectives are used to refer to individuals or things among a group of people or things. It is usually used before the noun it modifies. The distributive adjectives are mainly used to address the subjects of the sentence individually. Let us understand with the help of an example:

Take a close look at the sentences given below for a better understanding.

  • Sentence A: The learners composed a poem.
  • Sentence B: Each learner composed a poem.

In sentence A, the subject (learners) is referred to as a complete whole. Therefore, it is unclear whether the learners wrote the poem in a group together or individually.

However, in sentence B, it is highlighted that the poem is composed by each learner himself.  It implies that each of them wrote their own poems separately.

Learn All About Adjectives in English Grammar!

Functions of Distributive Adjectives

As you understand in the definition, distributive adjectives are used to modify a noun. Let’s study the below table to understand its functions in detail.  

Functions ExplanationExamples
Distributive adjectives are used to denote a group or entity collectively.If the subject in the sentence
is a collective noun (for example, the team, the institution, the bunch of grapes), in this case, we use distributive adjectives to denote the group members collectively.
If five teams compete in football match, it can be denoted as:
Every team gave its best performance in the last round.
This shows all teams one, two, three, four, and five performed their best.
Each team performed well on the quiz.

Every institution is unique in its qualities.
Distributive adjectives are also used to denote groups individually.If the subject in the sentence
is a group, distributive adjectives  can be used to address each of them
If there were twenty people participating in a quiz they received a gift, this could be expressed as:
Everyone who took the quiz received a gift.
This highlights that each person received a gift.
Every room in the hotel was booked.
Each student wrote a story in the class. 
Neither parent was happy with their child’s performance.

8 Types of Distributive Adjectives 

Following are the 8 types of distributive adjectives:

Distributive AdjectiveDefinitionGrammar rule used with singular or plural nouns and verbs Examples
Each This adjective is used to refer to each member or person separately in the group.Each is always used with both singular nouns and verbs.Each kudos in the class got a candy.
Each member of the institution worked hard for its growth.
Every This adjective is used to refer to all the things or people in the group together without any exceptions. It is also used for generalizations.Every is always used with both singular noun and verb.Every student in the class secured above 80% on the test.
Rohan tries to write something creative every day.
Either This adjective is used to choose one between two thingsEither is always used with both singular noun and verb.
Either Bali or Paris is the right destination to travel.
They can either use a pen or a pencil to fill out the form.
NeitherThis adjective is used in a negative sense when out of two options nothing is possible.Neither is always used with both singular noun and verb.Neither do I like ice cream or pasta at the party.
Neither student in the class passed the test.
BothThis adjective is used when two or more people or things are included in a statement, action, or situation.Both are used with a plural noun and a plural verb.Both the pens are not working.
Both parents are scientists.
Any This adjective is used to refer to one or some of a thing. The amount or quantity of things does not matter.Any is used with both singular noun and verb.She can’t find any eraser in the kit.
She makes a better cake than any other classmates.
One This adjective is used to refer to a single person or thing.One is used with both singular nouns and singular verbs.I was only left with one last pen to work with.
I will become a good artist one day.
None This adjective is used to denote nothing.The noun following this adjective is considered before applying, basically used both for singulars and plurals.None of these articles are useful for me.
None of them are coming to the party.

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Distributive Adjectives Exercises with Examples

Fill in the suitable distributive adjective in the following sentences:

1 They are planning to buy _______ SUV or Jeep.

2 _____ Students work hard to secure good grades.

3 Sunita is planning to go to _____ restaurant of her choice.

4 Rahul will meet me ______ day.

5 _____ students must be treated with respect and care.

6 ______ of the two options are suitable for them.

7 I ______love both momos and pizza from this restaurant.

8________ of them are going to the party.

9 They ate _______ cookies kept in the tin.

10 _____child presented their presentation.


1 either

2 Each

3 any

4 one

5 Every

6 None

7 neither

8 Both

9  all

10 Each

Complete List of Adjectives From A-Z


Q1 Why do Distributive Adjectives take a singular noun?

Ans They take singular nouns because instead of referring to nouns as groups they refer to them individually.

Q2 Which distributive adjective pairs plural nouns?

Ans Out of all the eight distributive adjectives only both pair with plural nouns and verbs.

Q3 How many types of Distributive Adjectives are there?

Ans There are a total of eight types of distributive adjectives such as each, every, either, neither, all, any, one and none.

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