Could you complete the sentence and explain? I don't know the correct answer. I encountered this question at the British Council test but they did not provide any answer end of the test.

Last year, Joanna bought two ... coats in New York

a. long, black, leather

b. black, long, leather

c. leather, black, long

1 Answer 1


long, black, leather is correct.

Adjectives are always in the following order: opinion, size, age, shape, color, origin, material, purpose.

No one really knows WHY we do it this way. Most people don't even realize they're doing it and if you asked them if there was a rule, they'd say "no". I don't think it's even technically a "rule". But everyone does it this way and if you don't, it will sound weird

The only real exception is when one of the adjectives is actually part of the name of the object, as in a Great Dane.

A green Great Dane and a great Green Dane are two very different things. One is a jealous dog and the other is a really good politician from Denmark who cares about the environment

  • Thanks, Kevin. This is the first time I've heard about this adjective ordering, and it's pretty useful.
    – bjorke07
    Mar 19, 2021 at 21:11
  • 1
    Yes, but "always" is a bit too strong. Adjectives tend to be in this order.
    – James K
    Mar 19, 2021 at 21:12
  • @JamesK It's pretty consistent
    – Kevin
    Mar 19, 2021 at 21:18
  • 2
    Try this link there are actually 9 categories not eight and the order is a little different. However if I had to list them from memory I would no doubt make a few mistakes, however nearly all native speakers do it automatically without even realising there is an order. Obviously something we pick up when we are very young. thefreedictionary.com/Order-of-Adjectives.htm
    – Brad
    Mar 19, 2021 at 22:47
  • There are also sub category lists, again these are normally done automatically by native speakers. Remember the old spaghetti western "The Good the Bad and the Ugly? Well here is why it has that name order. good, bad, lovely, strange, beautiful, nice
    – Brad
    Mar 19, 2021 at 22:56

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