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I have a paragraph as follows:

When you are comfortable, your body will be doing certain things automatically, just like it will tend to do certain things automatically when you are not comfortable. By knowing how you would be using your body if you were comfortable under different circumstances and then consciously using your body that way, you can make yourself comfortable more quickly.

Does the expression “you can make yourself comfortable more quickly” mean “You can quickly make yourself more comfortable” right? I’m studying English and I was taught that the true English grammar is “make + sb + adj”, not “make + sb + adv”, so the writer write incorrectly “make yourself comfortable more quickly”, right?

  • But comfortable is an adjective! – Damkerng T. Oct 31 '16 at 21:01
  • The more applies to the adverb quickly, not the adjective comfortable. There is a difference in meaning if you reverse that. – Robusto Oct 31 '16 at 21:06
  • How do you "make yourself comfortable"? You do it "more quickly". – P. E. Dant Oct 31 '16 at 21:10
  • @ P. E. Dant. I still don't understand. My English is not good. Can you explain in more detail for me? – user44008 Oct 31 '16 at 21:34
  • @ Damkerng, So the clause will be " S + can + V + O + adj + more + adv". I rarely meet the grammar "adj + more + adv", so can you explain it for me? or better, can you rewrite it to be easier to understand? – user44008 Oct 31 '16 at 21:40
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This sentence is correct. Here, more quickly modifies make, so the meaning is "achieve the state of being comfortable faster than you would otherwise". The degree of comfort is not changed; rather, you attain it more quickly.

Note that this sentence does in fact follow your expected construction of make + object + adjective: make yourself comfortable. It just has an additional adverb phrase added to the end. However, this construction is not a requirement for using the transitive verb make. Consider:

  • I will make it quickly
  • I'll make you tomorrow

In both of these sentences, make has a slightly different meaning than in your example: create something in the first and force to perform an action in the second (with the action being understood and omitted). However, my point is that it is possible to have a valid make + object + adverb construction. English is a confusing language and rarely has absolute grammatical rules.

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you can make yourself comfortable more quickly
you can more quickly make yourself comfortable

No, the author did not make a mistake here. The "more quickly" is an adverb phrase. It works at the end of the clause at least as well as it works in front of the verb "make". In either position, "more quickly" modifies the verb.

Both versions have the same basic pattern: a form of the verb "make", a direct object, and a predicate adjective. The adverb phrase isn't part of this pattern, but it doesn't interfere with it, either.

The verb "make" has more than one pattern:
verb + direct object
verb + indirect object + direct object
verb + direct object + predicate adjective
verb + direct object + predicate nominative

Adverb phrases can be added to any of these patterns.

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