Questions tagged [adjectives]

An adjective is a word that describes a noun. In English the adjective usually (but not always) precedes the noun it describes.

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60
votes
7answers
25k views

Why can “low” become “lower” and “lowest”, while “up” can't?

Why can "low" become lower (comparative) and lowest (superlative), while "up" can become only comparative (upper), rather than superlative (uppest)? The second question is what does act as a ...
43
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5answers
11k views

Using 'very' to emphasize a 'noun' where emphasizing is NOT possible!

Quite clear to me is the use of very before an adjective. It emphasizes. But then, when very is used before a noun, it confuses me. Furthermore, if it's before the noun which is not definable in ...
42
votes
10answers
9k views

“I hate red color” or “I hate red”: why exactly is the first option ungrammatical

If a person wants to say that the most hated color for him is red (in general, no specific hues implied), could he say: I hate red color. I've found very little results for this sentence at ...
40
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8answers
116k views

The difference between “Older” and “Elder”

What is the difference between "Older" and "Elder" ? And are they interchangeable ?
33
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4answers
6k views

What is the difference between feet and very feet?

Here for the past 40,000 years, a deep fissure in the Earth's crust has allowed oily tar and methane to bubble up to the surface from far underground, evidence of the ceaseless activity below our ...
29
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4answers
4k views

Why is the adjective for “mutate” not “mutatable”?

The adjective for "mutate" is "mutable", and not "mutatable". I wonder why the last two letters (-te) have been removed before adding "-able" to the end of it. Is there any rule? Any similar ...
25
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1answer
4k views

Why can “populace” be used as an adjective in “most populace cities?”

I wanted to talk about the cities where the population is high. My correspondent told me we must say: The most populace cities Instead of: The most populated cities I don't understand how the ...
23
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4answers
188k views

“my” vs “mine” (adjectives vs. possessive )

Is correct to say "my question is" or "mine question is". When I talk, I automatically use "my question is", but "mine" is a possessive pronoun and somehow when I think about it (and translate it ...
22
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4answers
3k views

Why is “crime story” more correct than “criminal story”?

Criminal is an adjective and story is a noun. Why is "crime story" used instead of "criminal story"? While both crime and story are nouns. What's this latter combination? Is "criminal story" even ...
22
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4answers
4k views

Why has “strangely” been used instead of “strange” in the sentence “Harry felt strangely”?

Isn't "feel" a linking verb here? If so, shouldn't "strange" be used in lieu of "strangely"? A tinkling bell rang somewhere in the depths of the shop as they stepped inside. It was a tiny place, ...
21
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3answers
7k views

“severe” as a verb: is it acceptable usage?

According to the Oxford Dictionary, the word "severe" is not a verb, but an adjective. However, the word "severe" seems to have been used as a verb in the sentence below: She has severed contact ...
21
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9answers
9k views

Wealthy and Rich, what's the difference

Is there any difference between someone being wealthy and someone being rich? For instance, is Bill Gates rich or wealthy? Or maybe he is both. I don't get the subtle difference if any.
20
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3answers
5k views

What does “to be painted shut” mean?

We tried, but the window couldn't be opened. It was painted shut. I am wondering what the bolded part could mean.
19
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5answers
7k views

Do you say “2 Byte” or “2 Bytes”?

Do you say "2 Byte" or "2 Bytes"? Which one is correct? If both is possible, when to use what? The same question would come to my mind for my own language: German. So, there has to be a technical ...
18
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5answers
3k views

Can adjectives modify a pronoun like “rich they”, “poor you” and “beautiful I”?

I want to modify a pronoun with adjectives like "rich he", "poor they" and "beautiful I". Can I do that? For example, can I say "I saw rich him driving a supercar", "Poor you can't buy foods enough", ...
17
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3answers
78k views

“I am hurting” in the meaning of “I am hurt”? Why?

Once in a while I hear someone use the phrase I am hurting. It appears to mean I am hurt, not I am hurting you. For example, consider the text on this drawing: When and why is it correct to say I'm ...
15
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3answers
3k views

'Golden spoon' or 'Gold spoon' -if the spoon is made of gold?

Adjective or noun? A golden spoon or A gold spoon What to use? A spoon is made of gold. Dictionary says: golden (adjective) -made of gold But then... (the same page) golden (adjective) - ...
14
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5answers
26k views

What is the difference between “general” and “generic”?

I am finding an example to clearly differentiate and demonstrate the use of these two words. At the moment, I am relying more on my feelings to decide which word to use. Say I am writing an article ...
14
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1answer
18k views

Can which be used with plural antecedents?

If I use which as a demonstrative adjective, can the noun be plural? Example: Which players won the best player awards last night? (When there are more than one who won the award) If the above ...
14
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4answers
2k views

How can a picture be naked?

I have some questions about the following phrases: a picture of a naked woman a naked picture of a woman On first reading, the second phrase seems wrong. The second phrase seems to be more ...
13
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7answers
4k views

How do I express दिल लगाना in English? It literally means 'attaching heart.'

I am Indian, not a native English speaker. I can't figure out the English expression. We Indians use दिल लगाना literal translation 'to attach heart' which implies to be in love with someone in Hindi....
13
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4answers
2k views

To take oneself's life is not an act of courage

How do we make a reflexive using the "oneself" when referring to actions or inactions in a sentence. For examples: To take oneself's life is not an act of courage
13
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3answers
5k views

Noun used as an adjective in “passenger seat”?

A friend of mine (a native speaker of Japanese) wrote "passenger's seat", which a native speaker of English corrected to "passenger seat". Onelook.com has entries for the latter but not the former, ...
12
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10answers
7k views

Is there a word for a man who behaves like a woman?

Does there exist a word which describes someone who is male but behaves like a female? In Chinese, we say that "他很 (He is so) 娘". Such guys may have the following features (include but not limited to):...
12
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7answers
8k views

Is “horrorest” a correct English word?

I know that "horror" is also an adjective as in I saw a horror movie yesterday. But I don't know if its comparative and superlative forms are "horrorer" and "horrorest" respectively. I searched on ...
12
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7answers
1k views

“waterway … flowed sombre” - Should Joseph Conrad have used an adverb, not an adjective?

SPOILER ALERT: This question asks about the last line of Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. If you are reading the novel, you may want to skip this question. Should an adverb (i.e. sombrely) have ...
12
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2answers
733 views

Is this -ing form a gerund or a participle?

Education is enlightening. In this example, is enlightening a gerund or a participle? From my point of view (which can be wrong), enlightening is a gerund. Can anyone please explain?
12
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3answers
12k views

Does an uncountable noun take an article if it has an adjective before it?

We all know that uncountable noun does not take an article. But then, if there's an adjective modifying an uncountable noun what should happen? An article before adjective + uncountable noun? OR ...
12
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1answer
328 views

May I use a phrasal verb as an adjective, like “commented out code”?

I'd like to express that some old code that has been commented out should be removed. May I phrase it as follows? Remove old, commented out code.
12
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3answers
2k views

“Despicable Me”: can “me” be used in such a way?

We know a movie named Despicable Me. I guess it means "I am despicable". But can me be used in such a way? For example, can I further say unavoidable me to mean "I am unavoidable"? Are there other ...
11
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4answers
1k views

The usage of the word over

Can we use the word over ( I think as adjective) to mean that something, which can be refilled or re-bought, is finished or depleted. For example: 1.This battery/power unit is over. We need to plug ...
11
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4answers
2k views

Confused using the word 'Transgendered'

If we go by the dictionaries like OALD and MacMillan, the word is adjective and used for a person who is in between male and female. But, I often read 'transgender man' or 'woman'. Here, ...
11
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1answer
390 views

Fishy, Dishy: Adjectives used as nouns?

In the children song below, I'm bit confused on the two lines highlighted: Dance to your daddy My little baby Dance to your daddy My little lamb You will have a fishy In your little ...
11
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4answers
676 views

The grammar of 'Ready to take' versus 'Easy to take'

Why is this ungrammatical?: * The medicine is easy to be taken. when we can say: The medicine is ready to be taken. What is the difference between "ready" and "easy" that makes the ...
11
votes
1answer
5k views

A equal B or A is equal to B?

Equal is an Adj. However, I frequently hear people say or write A equal B as a complete sentence, instead of A is equal to B. For instance, As a result, A equal B.
10
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6answers
5k views

We're waiting in a BIG or LONG queue?

What's the idiomatic adjective for the noun "queue"? I waited there in a very long queue. or I waited there in a very big queue. Or maybe something else?
10
votes
1answer
2k views

When to use an object pronoun or a possessive adjective before a gerund

The rule says that we can use a possessive adjective or an object pronoun before a gerund. Is there a rule that says when to use each or are they interchangeable? Some say that it's wrong to use an ...
10
votes
1answer
161 views

“I bought children books for my children” - is it grammatical?

Is it grammatical to use children as a possessive adjective in a phrase like this: I bought children books for my children If it's incorrect, what is the proper way to say the same, and is there ...
9
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9answers
15k views

What is the right word to describe something more than “great”

I need to write short email that will state something like: ..that will turn a good company into a ... company. What would be a proper word that I can use?
9
votes
6answers
27k views

“bigger” vs. “more big”

As we know, comparatives compare two things. So, for example, we say that one thing is larger or more temperate than another thing. Now, let us consider the following examples. A. The African ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What's the second meaning of “blue” here?

A Reddit 'Shower thoughts' post: If you borrow someone's newly bought blue cheese, you would have something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue all in one item. You ...
9
votes
1answer
218k views

Is it correct? “You may call me in your convenient any time.”

I am confusing whether I could use "convenient" and "any" at the same time. Also, I'd like to know the different nuance between may and can, in this sentence: You may call me in your convenient ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Difference between “little” and “small”

Is there any obvious difference between little and small? A couple of examples: Big car vs. small (or little) car You have to pay just a small (or little) amount for such a wonderful item ...
9
votes
5answers
20k views

How can I figure out whether a word is an adverb or an adjective?

How can we confirm the word modifying an adjective is an adverb which may well be adjective sometimes? In this sentence, what are the parts of speech of 'bright' and 'red'? She wore a bright red ...
9
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5answers
30k views

“I am surprised”: passive voice or adjective?

The sentence is: "I am surprised." I wonder why it cannot be considered as the passive form of "Someone surprises me." If it is true that it is in passive form, then why do people say that surprised ...
8
votes
8answers
4k views

An adjective for something that is not as well-known as it should be

There are two related problems that I am working on. The first problem is very famous. The second problem was published in a book about 70 years ago, but since then, little attention has been given to ...
8
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3answers
3k views

is “release date” grammatically correct?

Why I always heard something like "Iphone release date and price unveiled". shouldn't it be be released by someone? (iphone can't release anything itself as a lifeless object) I look up some the ...
8
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4answers
1k views

Construction of “females representatives”

In a Guardian article, I stumbled over this sentence: These kind of men deter women from entering politics, when more females representatives is exactly what America needs. I would have expected ...
8
votes
4answers
4k views

An adjective for something that has been achieved with a lot of effort through years

I am looking for an adjective that describes something that has been achieved hardly after a lot of effort through years. For instance, hardly-achieved experience OR hardly-gained knowledge. Is ...
8
votes
5answers
7k views

Does “I'm positive” mean “I agree with you”?

In a drama, I heard the following exchange: person A : Oh, Today is very cold. person B : I'm positive. So I thought that "I'm positive" means "I agree with you", but after googling it seems like ...

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