Adjectives Tutorial – English Grammar
Adjectives can describe any aspect of a noun such as:
the color: red, green, blue, yellow;
the age of something: old, new, young, ancient;
the quality or value of something: expensive, refined, cheap, nice;
the attributes of a person: smart, beautiful, friendly, short;
an emotional states: happy, sad, ecstatic, tired; etc.
Adjectives are sometimes used for comparisons. These adjective are called comparative adjectives. To make a comparative adjective, either the word stem is conjugated with “-er”, or the word “more” is put before the adjective.
An adjective in the superlative form describes the most extreme case. To use a superlative adjective is to describe something as having the “most” of some characteristics. To make a superlative adjective, either the word stem is conjugated with “-est”, or the word “most” is put before the adjective.
One Syllable Adjectives
Usually one syllable adjectives are conjugated with “-er” to make the comparative form, and conjugated with “-est” to make the superlative form.
Two Syllable Adjectives
Two syllable adjectives are changed into the comparative form by conjugating the word stem with “-er”, or by putting the word “more” before the adjective. To form a superlative adjective from a two syllable adjective, conjugate the word stem with “-est”, or put the word “most” before the adjective.
Usually when the adjective ends with the letter “-y”, then the “-y” is removed and the word stem is conjugated with “-ier” to make the comparative adjective, or conjugated with “-iest” to make the superlative adjective.
Here are some examples of two syllable adjectives being made into comparative and superlative forms using the words “more” and “most”.
|honest||more honest||most honest|
|extreme||more extreme||most extreme|
|helpful||more helpful||most helpful|
|careful||more careful||most careful|
It is important to only use one of the modifiers:
on an adjective when making the comparative or superlative form.
Three Syllable Adjectives
Three syllable adjectives are made into the comparative form by putting the word “more” before the adjective. Superlative adjectives are formed by putting the word “most” before an adjective that has three or more syllables.
|delicious||more delicious||most delicious|
|beautiful||more beautiful||most beautiful|
|exciting||more exciting||most exciting|
|sensitive||more sensitive||most sensitive|
A few adjectives are irregular, meaning that they do not behave in the normal manner.
Usually adjectives are placed right before the noun that they modify.
They bought a new (adjective) computer (noun).
He has a nice (adjective) bicycle (noun).
I like green (adjective) apples (noun) more than red (adjective) apples (noun).
Adjectives can also be placed after the noun that they describe.
Let’s try something (noun) new (adjective).
He likes his coffee (noun) black (adjective).
Sometimes adjectives follow “be” verbs.
I am (“be” verb) friendly (adjective).
Angelina (noun) is (“be” verb) beautiful (adjective).
The girls (noun) are (“be” verb) diligent (adjective).
Vacation (noun) will be (“be” verb) fun (adjective).