For example, there are biological science and scientific news. Can I say it 'biologically scientific news'?

In this context, 'biological' means 'relating to biology,' and 'scientific' means 'relating to science.'

1 Answer 1


Short answer, no.

There are situations where you can put an adverb, adjective and noun together, for example "statistically significant data".

Biological science, however, is a compound noun, made up of an adjective and a noun. You can't just convert each of the parts to something else, and expect it to be a "compound adjective" or whatever.

Fortunately, there is no limit to the number of words in a compound noun, so it's perfectly OK to just tack another noun on the end. In this case, you get "biological science news".

  • When would 'biological science news" be preferable to 'biology news'? Feb 1, 2021 at 12:16
  • "Biological science" a compound noun?
    – BillJ
    Feb 1, 2021 at 14:06
  • @MichaelHarvey that's a good question. I thought about it for a while, and considered changing it to political science, which is clearly different to politics. In fact, biological science is not a tautology. biology (bio + logy) s the study of living things, and science is "knowledge from the careful study of...." so biological science is knowledge from the study of biological things.
    – JavaLatte
    Feb 1, 2021 at 23:53
  • @BillJ Yes. A simple adverb+noun is commutative- you can change the structure without changing the meaning. " I am eating a green apple" -> "I am eating an apple that is green". A compound noun is not commutative "I am studying political science" does not mean the same as "I am studying science that is political".
    – JavaLatte
    Feb 2, 2021 at 2:40
  • In for example, "I'm interested in biological science", it's not a compound word, but a syntactic construction consisting of modifier+head. Compounds are different; they consist of two bases, cf. "green house" vs "greenhouse".
    – BillJ
    Feb 2, 2021 at 7:24

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