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Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #115908: Adjectives: Where to put them?
Adjectives: Where to put them?
I) Nature and Place of ADJECTIVES: in English, ALL ADJECTIVES REMAIN INVARIABLE in the plural.
A. Attributive adjectives are placed before the substantive, even if there are several of them, in the singular and the plural.
· - a big red ball=> big red balls.
B. Some adjectives are always subject complements (or predicate adjectives). They are placed after some verbs, like to BE.
These adjectives are : alive, asleep, afraid, awake, cross, ill, glad etc.
II) Adjectives ending in -ed and in -ing:
- a good-looking person= a person who looks good. (verb with an active meaning)
- a surprised young man= a man who looks/ is surprised (verb with a passive meaning. The action is performed)
The same adjectives may often be used BOTH with an active meaning: " noun+ ing", AND with a passive meaning (the action is done!): "noun+ ed". In this case, it's very important not to mix them up, and to take care of your endings!
If you're not careful, you may end up saying an ambiguous sentence or the exact opposite of what you were meaning to say.
- I don't think what you're saying is interesting... in fact, I'm bored and tired of listening to you.
III) ORDERING multiple adjectives: when there are more than one adjective qualifying a noun, they are in a particular order: adjectives which describe opinions or attitudes (e.g. amazing) usually come first, before more neutral, factual ones (e.g. red). The order is:
Size (form, dimension), Age (new, young, old), Colour, Origin (nationality, religion, geographical or political origin), Material.
( Reminder= SACOM)
- Gatsby's big, brand-new, yellow car was extraordinary.
- An amazing tiny beige Turkish leather bag.
- Daisy was a beautiful, young, fair-haired and grey-eyed woman.
An adjective expressing a subjective judgment or opinion (nice, good, bad, rich, stupid...) are placed first;
- a stupid old man.
- a strange thin little boy.
Well well! Here's the test. Even if I tried to make it interesting, you may find it boring and tiring and be bored and tired when finishing! Disturbing, isn' it?
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