The Headline:

"ee the Read Like the Wind Newsletter

Our critic’s latest recommendations for books old and new include “Pigeon” and “The Odyssey.”

why "old" and "new" after book?? any special sense? I would have written:

...recommendations for old and new books....

so why these adjectives comes after the noun

  • 1
    [grammar correction: Why do these adjectives come after the noun.]
    – Lambie
    May 25, 2022 at 16:49
  • 3
    "[Nouns] old and new" or "[Nouns] both old and new" is one of those old-fashioned usages that have survived in today's English even though we wouldn't normally put the adjective after the noun. May 25, 2022 at 16:52
  • 2
    What does "ee" mean?
    – gotube
    May 25, 2022 at 22:07

1 Answer 1


Adjectives that come after the noun are called postpositive adjectives.

They're uncommon in modern English, but we used to have them a long time ago. When you see them today, they are usually old phrases and expressions that were very common, and haven't changed.

The phrases "big/large and small" and "old and new" are probably the most common postpositive adjectives still used in modern English. Because they're old, these expressions have a poetic or old-fashioned feeling. They're not everyday English. We cannot say, "books old" or "books new" on their own.

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