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Adjectives - English Grammar Basics | General Aptitude for GATE - Mechanical Engineering PDF Download

Adjectives are descriptive words and they describe the noun in context. Adjectives usually answer the questions like "which", "what kind of", "how many", etc.

The little boy 
new toy 
Enough meatloaf

 

Types of Adjectives

  1. Attributive
    Attributives are the ones that come right before the word(s) they modify.

    The old man asked a question.
    That is a good book. 
    I found an old, black, cotton sweater. 
     
  2. Appositive
    Appositives come after the words they modify. They are usually used in pairs.

    The woman, beautiful and smart, knew what she was doing.
    The winner, tired but happy, waved and smiled.
     
  3. Predicate
    Predicates come after verb to be or after linking verbs. They come at the end of the sentence and they modify the subject.

    The tickets are expensive
    She looked old.
    The oven felt hot.
    He was young and shy.


 

The Order of Adjectives


When there are more than 1 adjectives modifying the same word, they are usually placed in a certain order. 

a- What we think (Lovely, beautiful, intelligent, nice, fine...)
b- Size (small, big, large, short, tall...) 
c- Age (young, old...) 
d- Shape (round, slim, fat, square...) 
e- Color (white, green, red...) 
f- Material (plastic, glass, wooden...) 
g- Origin (German, Russian, American...) 

A nice big house. A big square table. 
A lovely little town.
An old plastic pipe. 
An expensive Scotch whiskey. 
A tall young woman. 
Intelligent young Danish scientist.

 

Present and Past Participles as Adjectives


Ing / Ed - Interesting / Interested

BoringCauses boredom 
BoredResult of boredom (something boring) 
TiringCauses tiredness 
TiredResult of something tiring 

• He is bored with his job. 
Because his job is boring (at least to him), it caused him to be bored. 
• He is boring.
I don't want to be with him because he is a boring person.

•He is interested in your offer.
Because your offer is interesting (at least to him), it drew his attention. 
•He is an interesting man. 
He engages attention, you want to know him better. 

Some other verb roots that can become adjectives in a sentence by adding ed or ing

Charm, admire, amaze, amuse, depress, worry, thrill, excite, disgust, disappoint, discourage, embarrass, fascinate, frighten, frustrate, horrify, irritate, please, satisfy, shock, startle, stimulate, surprise, terrify, confuse

 

Degrees of Adjectives

 

  1. Positive Degree : Expresses a quality without a comparison 

    The twins are smart
    The tree is tall
    The book is old
     
  2. Comparative Degree : Used to compare things to each other.

    Adjectives - English Grammar Basics | General Aptitude for GATE - Mechanical Engineering

    Fred is taller than Barney. 
    He is the more aggressive of the two. 
    Barney is smarter than Fred. 
    Climbing is more tiring than running. 
     
  3. Superlative Degree : Superlative is the highest or the lowest degree when comparing two or more things/persons. The inflectional suffix for superlative degree is est. Longer superlatives usually take most instead of est

    This is the brightest room in the house.
    Duncan is the tallest player on the team.
    Britney is the most beautiful girl in the class. 

    Article the is used with superlative adjectives since it is definite (thing/person) what's being talked about.


 

Absolute Adjectives

You either have the quality or you don't. There is no comparison. Dead, perfect, round...

You can't be deader than someone else who is only dead. 


Some Absolute Adjectives: 

Adjectives - English Grammar Basics | General Aptitude for GATE - Mechanical Engineering


Informally, to emphasize or metaphorically, you may hear people say "I am more dead", "This one is whiter". But they are misusing absolute adjectives. 

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FAQs on Adjectives - English Grammar Basics - General Aptitude for GATE - Mechanical Engineering

1. What are adjectives in English grammar?
Ans. Adjectives are words that describe or modify nouns or pronouns. They provide additional information about the qualities, characteristics, or attributes of the noun or pronoun they are modifying. For example, in the sentence "She has a beautiful dress," the word "beautiful" is an adjective that describes the dress.
2. How do adjectives function in a sentence?
Ans. Adjectives can function either attributively or predicatively in a sentence. Attributive adjectives directly modify the noun they are describing and usually come before the noun. For example, in the phrase "a red car," the word "red" is an attributive adjective. Predicative adjectives, on the other hand, follow a linking verb and describe the subject of the sentence. For example, in the sentence "The car is red," the word "red" is a predicative adjective.
3. What are some examples of different types of adjectives?
Ans. There are several types of adjectives, including descriptive adjectives (e.g., beautiful, tall), demonstrative adjectives (e.g., this, that), possessive adjectives (e.g., my, his), interrogative adjectives (e.g., which, what), and numeral adjectives (e.g., one, first). Descriptive adjectives describe the qualities of a noun, demonstrative adjectives point out specific nouns, possessive adjectives show ownership, interrogative adjectives ask questions about nouns, and numeral adjectives indicate the number or order of nouns.
4. Can an adjective be used to compare different things?
Ans. Yes, adjectives can be used in comparative and superlative forms to compare different things. The comparative form is used to compare two things, while the superlative form is used to compare more than two things. For example, in the sentence "She is taller than her brother," the adjective "taller" is in the comparative form. In the sentence "She is the tallest student in the class," the adjective "tallest" is in the superlative form.
5. How can I identify adjectives in a sentence?
Ans. To identify adjectives in a sentence, look for words that describe or modify nouns or pronouns. Adjectives can answer questions such as "What kind?", "Which one?", "How many?", or "How much?" about the noun or pronoun they are modifying. They can also be identified by their placement before a noun or after a linking verb. Additionally, adjectives can be recognized by their ability to have comparative and superlative forms.
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