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7 Types of Adjectives: Learn How to Use Them Correctly in English

7 Types of Adjectives: Learn How to Use Them Correctly in English

Can you write good or well? What’s the difference? Do you munch on a apple or an apple or even the apple? If you’re puzzling over such questions, never fear. This article is for you. It’s all about how you can use the right words to the right place to get your job done. The key to expressing a precise thought is to use the types of adjectives in your sentence.

How Can We Use Different Types of Adjectives In A Sentence?

An adjective describes nouns. It also adds meaning and interest. In the following sentence, they are in italics,

“The lazy short girl is late again!”

Have you seen that an adjective changed the noun, explaining more about the “girl”? And, as such, it serves different purposes in a sentence. So, based on the variety of its functions, there are different types of adjectives. 


1. Descriptive Adjectives

A type of adjective that offers descriptions about a noun or a pronoun in a sentence. Examples include beautiful, tall, short, ugly, nice, or loud. Within a simple sentence structure, descriptive adjectives add information or qualities to the word. Read the following sentence:

“The short girl has a beautiful dress.”

It describes the features of a girl, tells more about the noun, and gives more information about it. But you can only state a fact without describing it in a sentence. For instance, “The dress has a stain.” Such a sentence is specific to the dress but does not offer other descriptive adjectives. By adding a descriptive adjective, it reads, “The red dress has a large yellow stain.” How simple! Isn’t it?


2. Quantitative Adjectives

Quantitative adjectives describe the quantity and deal with “how much” or “how many.” So you can use numbers in a sentence to serve the purpose; for example, one, a hundred, thirty, and five.

These adjectives provide the quantitative values as a way of modifying a noun or pronoun in a sentence. Look at the following examples:

  • How many oranges did you buy?
  • You only bought five apples.
  • How much money do you have?
  • I have a hundred shillings only.


3. Demonstrative Adjectives

This adjective describes which pronoun or noun refers to a speaker. Their purpose is to point out or point to something. Depending on the type used, these types of adjectives can help identify factors, such as nearness or proximity of the noun or pronoun. Demonstrative pronouns include “This,” “That,” “These,” and “Those.” In a sentence structure, demonstrative adjectives always come before the modified word. For instance, “This cup is broken” or “Those people are drunk.”

You can also use more than one demonstrative adjective in a sentence. For instance,

“Which pen is yours?” “This pen is mine, that one is of John, and those other two are of my teacher.”


4. Possessive Adjectives

Possessive adjectives show ownership. They go in front of nouns. To use the correct one, you need to consider the person who owns the noun. For example, you can’t say, “This is my.” Here, you have to add a noun after the possessive adjective to make the sentence complete. So it should read, “That is my house.” But a sentence can only make sense if it uses “his” without a noun. For instance, rather than saying the jacket of my brother, you can use “His jacket.”


5. Distributive Adjectives

A distributive adjective qualifies a noun as one of a group. Modified nouns and pronouns generally follow these types of adjectives. The distributive adjectives include:

  • Each – it points to a group or category and describes it at an individual level
  • Every – it generalizes every single group
  • Either – it describes one of two entities
  • Neither – it refers to not one or the other between options and
  • Any – it tells about one or many items out of any selected number.

A sentence can also use any when the choice is irrelevant. For instance, “I don’t mind taking any, it does not matter.” Some examples of distributive adjectives in sentences are:

  • Every cloud has a silver lining
  • Which of these two bags would fit all your belongings? Neither of them will.
  • What about either of those two large ones? I suppose either of them is large enough.


6. Interrogative Adjectives

To interrogate means to question. As its name implies, a sentence uses such adjectives when asking about something. Nouns or pronouns come after the interrogative pronouns in a question format. For instance,

  • Which decides between available options
  • What makes a general choice, and
  • Whose asks about the owner of something

But “who” and “how” are not part of the interrogative adjectives. It’s because you can’t use them to modify a noun in a sentence. For instance, it would be incorrect to ask, “Who coat is this?” Instead, you can ask, “Whose coat is this?” The former does not make sense.

But if “which,” “what,” and “whose” immediately follow a noun, they qualify as interrogative adjectives. The following two sentences use the word which differently:

  1. “Which size is your favorite?”
  2. “Which is your favorite size?”

The former uses the word “which” as an adjective. It’s unlike the latter because of the positioning of the noun in the sentence. So you can use interrogative adjectives in the following ways:

  • Which songs did you listen to during your youthful stage?
  • What inspired you in our guest speaker today?
  • Whose opinion do you consider more realistic?


7. Articles

English has only three articles: “a,” “an,” and “the.” But, when used in a sentence, they serve as adjectives to describe the subject noun. For example,

  • “A” refers to a singular but general item,
  • “An” belongs to a thing whose spelling starts with a vowel sound, and
  • “The” denotes a single or plural product.

So, when using an article as an adjective, you should be careful about using it correctly. It depends on whether the noun is singular, general, or specific, and whether its spelling begins with a vowel. For example, when speaking about a particular thing, a sentence uses “the:” “The tall mast is down.” But when it uses “a,” the noun described can be any noun: “A cat is dangerous.”

A sentence can use one or more adjectives to describe a noun or a pronoun. But a comma or conjunction should separate the two. Of note is that some adjectives describing color, size, manner, time, origin, shape, age, opinion, distance, and material have to occur in a specific order.

The use of adjectives can also compare the descriptive aspects of a noun. They are either comparative or superlative adjectives. For instance, “A giraffe is taller than a zebra.” In superlatives, the adjective “tall” can be, “Giraffe is the tallest wild animal in the jungle.” So a sentence uses comparative adjectives when it compares two nouns in a descriptive form. Superlative adjectives, however, acquire the ending “-est” except when there is more than one syllable. In such a case, a sentence uses “most” or “least.”

But some adjectives are “irregular adjectives.” They do not add “er” or “est” to form a comparison. Instead, they use specific, memorable words. Such adjectives acquire different words. For instance, the word “good” uses “better” in comparative form and “best” in superlative form.

Still Don’t Know How to Use Different Types of Adjectives?

An adjective is one of the nine parts of speech. A sentence without it can give information, but it will not tell how much. Its correct use provides more information or describes a noun. An adjective exists in different forms, and its use relies on the intended meaning. When using more than one adjective in a sentence, you should follow a recommended order to communicate a complete sense. You can consult us if you still need any help!

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4 thoughts on “7 Types of Adjectives: Learn How to Use Them Correctly in English”

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