Adjectives are really important when you want to tell a story because they make a story more interesting and more detailed. This is the case when you want to describe a photograph, for example. Describing a picture without adjectives is just a picture. If you use an adjective to describe that picture, it becomes vibrant, small, big and even colourful! In short, adjectives are essential in every language. On this page, you have an overview of what they are, where you place them in a sentence and there are also some examples.

What are adjectives?

Adjectives are words that accompany nouns. They give more information about the noun in a sentence; so it gives more information about people or things.

Who do we use adjectives?

As already mentioned above, adjectives make a language more alive because you get more information about someone or something. Each one you use gives more information about a noun in the sentence.

You can describe someone or something in many different ways and that’s why it’s important to give an overview of the most common uses of adjectives.

Adjectives Taalhulp Engels

Describing taste

a delicious waffle
a bitter piece of candy
a sweet tea
a spicy steak
a sour apple

Describing sounds

a loud bang
a noisy crowd
a silent room
a whispering man
a muffled sound

Describing items

a round ball
a big box
a straight branch
an oval window
a hollow pumpkin

Describing colour

a green bush
a red apple
a blue ball
a dark sweater
an orange pen

Describing emotions

an angry man
a happy friend
a faithful woman
a grateful pupil
a jealous friend

Describing what something feels like

a soft doll
a moist wall
an icy wind
a dusty floor
greasy hair

Describing time

an eternal struggle
a quick walk
an annual meeting
a future wife
a long conversation

Describing quantity

countless hours
several books
enough food
hundreds of people
a measly harvest

Describing someone

a smart boy
a crazy man
an evil professor
an ambitious boss
a calm teacher

Describing size

a giant box
a short ruler
a thin book
a fat dog
a tall woman

Place of adjectives in a sentence

After seeing all these examples, it should be clear already where you put adjectives in a sentence. You also have an overview below:

Before the noun

The most common place is before the noun.

a long story
a big tree
an interesting article

After the verb ‘to be’

In some cases, you can also put the adjective after the verb to be. They can also be placed after linking verbs such as ‘to get’, ‘to feel’, ‘to become’, ‘to seem’, ‘to taste’ and ‘to appear’. Linking verbs are verbs that describe a particular state someone is in or a sensorial experience.

she is beautiful
the box is big
he becomes famous
Adjectives Taalhulp Engels

Word order adjectives

Of course, it’s possible to use more than one adjective to talk about the same noun in one sentence. If this is the case, there is a word order that you need to respect. Keep in mind that more than three adjectives about the same noun is not that common.

You have a brief overview of the word order for adjectives below:

  1. Quantity
  2. Opinion
  3. Size
  4. Age
  5. Form
  6. Colour
  7. Origin
  8. Material
  9. Purpose, goal

This is a short overview of the word order you need to respect when you have more than one adjective to talk about the same noun. For an extensive overview of word order with examples, click here.

Plural form of adjectives

An adjective always has the same form, even when you are dealing with a noun in the plural form. You don’t change the adjective when this is the case.

thin books
round balls
yellow flowers
evil people
bad apples

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