42 votes

Why use an adjective after a noun?

Rather than Noun + Adjective, it can be thought of as Noun that is Adj, which uses relative clause but that is is omitted. We always have to go to, you know, someplace that is nice. Is there ...
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24 votes
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"Zero tolerance for walkers, or them to be." -- grammar, meaning?

He's sick. A sick man. We start down that road, where do we draw the line? The line's pretty clear. Zero tolerance for walkers, or them to be. The meaning is Zero tolerance for walkers, or ...
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12 votes

Using indefinite articles before adjectives: "Let's have a good breakfast"

Let's have breakfast. Here the word breakfast is an abstract noncount noun. "Abstract" means that you can't touch it with you hands, roughly speaking. Let's have a good breakfast. Here the ...
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12 votes
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Why use an adjective after a noun?

There are two possible mechanisms that could explain the position of the adjective in the example sentences that you provided: postpositive adjectives and whiz-deletion. When you apply an adjective ...
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  • 56.2k
11 votes
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Which of either of "too" and "so" to use in "His eyes were ...... bad that . . . "?

too = excessively so = to such a degree We serve only the freshest bread to our customers. This bread is too stale to be served. It has gone beyond or exceeded a certain degree of staleness. ...
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9 votes
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Articles before modified proper nouns

It would not be strictly incorrect to drop the articles, however written with the articles, it is a bit like saying "a version of Hermione that is interested" and "a version of Ron who is thoroughly ...
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  • 1,937
7 votes
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Word order in "one only of the 12 dead astronauts"

Of the two hypotheticals you offer, only one of the 12 dead astronauts would have been technically correct, but sounded like a reproach, as if the narrator/author was criticizing her for being ...
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  • 8,221
7 votes

Is "chicken" a modifier in "chicken soup"?

It sounds like you're asking for an answer in terms of CGEL terminology. Since you asked on ELL, though, I'll write you an answer targeted at someone learning English rather than learning CGEL. I ...
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  • 27.4k
7 votes

Articles before modified proper nouns

If Hermione is skeptical under the present circumstances: Harry headed to the trophy room accompanied by a skeptical Hermione. The indefinite article implies, or at least it leaves open the ...
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6 votes
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"I hope you write those letters thick." is correct?

From your previous question, it's clear that the term you are looking for is bold. Bold text is text that appears thicker than the text surrounding it. As for this question, you probably want to use ...
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6 votes

Using indefinite articles before adjectives: "Let's have a good breakfast"

Breakfast is both countable and uncountable, concrete and abstract. As a meal, it's countable just like meal. As the idea of a meal, the general notion, it's uncountable (just like "mealness"). ...
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6 votes
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What is the main noun in "a year's worth of learning" in the following sentence?

I agree with Andrew that @BillJ really deserves the bounty for having fully answered the question. Since his and Hector's post both seem to miss Mr J's point, however, I'll mention that this is ...
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  • 4,630
6 votes
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When can we use 'much' in affirmative clauses?

It depends how you use much. Looking at the first sentence you quoted, it is clear that much qualifies the comparative adverb faster. She runs much faster than he does. If you use the simple ...
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5 votes
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What is the difference between an adjective before the noun and after the noun?

The problem is that grammar is somewhat tied to meaning here. The position of an adjective in a sentence depends on its role. When used attributively (to describe a noun), as stated in other comments ...
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5 votes
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"I cut it by hand" - what is "by hand"? (Grammatically)

By hand is not any kind of verb.† It's an ordinary preposition phrase modifying the verb phrase cut it, describing the manner or means of cutting. Because it modifies a verb phrase in the same ...
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5 votes
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Thanks to the newly (purchasing/ purchased) printer,

"purchased" is correct. It refers to an action that has been completed - The printer has been/was purchased. The continuous tense can't be used in this context - "a purchasing printer" is the one ...
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4 votes
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When adjectives become predicatives, do they also become adverbs?

The definitive answer is given here: https://linguistics.stackexchange.com/questions/8438/do-predicative-adjuncts-modify-nouns-or-verbs. Be sure to read all the comments as well, especially John ...
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4 votes
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All Time In Pacific Time

Both are okay and understandable. [The answer ends here.] But still, if we think a bit further, we find a very little difference. When it comes to conversion, I think more common is using the ...
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4 votes

Are these "for + nouns" adjectival prepositional phrases or adverbial prepositional ones?

It's not easy to tell because it doesn't make a difference.     Let's look at the first sentence on your list: The pension plans involve very little risk for employers. First, ...
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4 votes

Are these "for + nouns" adjectival prepositional phrases or adverbial prepositional ones?

I have no difficulty in understanding these sentences, but I was just wondering whether these preposition phrases of "for + nouns" modify the verbs or modify the nouns before them. Seems to me both ...
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4 votes

Bulbul bird beak or Bulbul bird's beak?

Whether you use a possessive with apostrophe-s ("Bulbul bird's beak") or a noun adjunct ("Bulbul bird beak") depends on how you wish the phrase to be used. If you are describing a beak that belongs to ...
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  • 169
4 votes

Why is oak considered an adjective in 'the big oak tree'?

I wouldn't call it an adjective, I'd call it a modifier. A modifier is: a word or phrase that adds to the meaning of another word or phrase by giving more information about it A Wikipedia ...
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  • 108k
4 votes

Some shepherds came up, bringing with them a man

The participle phrase headed by bringing can be understood to modify the previous clause some shepherds came up. We need not think that it must attach to a single word in that clause, whether that be ...
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4 votes

Which of either of "too" and "so" to use in "His eyes were ...... bad that . . . "?

If you have a particular quality to such a great extent that something isn't possible, you can express this idea by using either so or too, but the structure of the sentence in both cases will be ...
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3 votes

jihadists the world over

The world over is another way -now rather literary and clichéd- of saying all over the world, meaning “at places throughout the world”. It does modify jihadists.
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3 votes

Put On Itching Cream

He put on sunscreen. seems to be standard English. Would it okay to write "he put on anti-itch cream"? Yes, it is 98% correct. Perfectly reasonable conversation: "Did you remember ...
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  • 8,221
3 votes

'more' vs 'the more' - "I doubt this the more because.."

Meaning The - (adverb) used before comparative adjectives or adverbs for emphasis. Example - She looks the happier for her trip. In your sentence - ...I doubt this the more... - more is a ...
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