Level: intermediate

Two adjectives

We often have two adjectives in front of a noun:

a handsome young man
a big black car
that horrible big dog

Some adjectives give a general opinion. We can use these adjectives to describe almost any noun:

good
bad
lovely
strange
nice
beautiful
brilliant
excellent
awful
important
wonderful
nasty

He's a good/wonderful/brilliant/bad/dreadful teacher.

That's a good/wonderful/brilliant/bad/dreadful book.

Some adjectives give a specific opinion. We only use these adjectives to describe particular kinds of noun, for example:

Food Furniture, buildings People, animals
delicious
tasty
comfortable
uncomfortable
clever
intelligent
friendly

We usually put a general opinion in front of a specific opinion:

nice tasty soup
a nasty uncomfortable armchair

a lovely intelligent animal

We usually put an opinion adjective in front of a descriptive adjective:

a nice red dress
a silly old man
those horrible yellow curtains

Order of adjectives 1

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Order of adjectives 2

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Adjectives after link verbs

We use some adjectives only after a link verb:

afraid
alive
alone
asleep
content
glad
ill
ready
sorry
sure
unable
well

Some of the commonest -ed adjectives are normally used only after a link verb:

annoyed
bored
finished
pleased
thrilled

We say:

Our teacher was ill.
My uncle was very glad when he heard the news.
The policeman seemed to be very annoyed.

but we do not say:

We had an ill teacher.
When he heard the news he was
a very glad uncle.
He seemed to be a very annoyed policeman.

Order of adjectives 3

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Level: advanced

Three or more adjectives

Sometimes we have three adjectives in front of a noun, but this is unusual:

a nice handsome young man     
a big black American car     
that horrible big fierce dog

It is very unusual to have more than three adjectives.

Adjectives usually come in this order:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
General opinion Specific opinion Size Shape Age Colour Nationality Material
Order of adjectives 4­

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Adjectives in front of nouns

A few adjectives are used only in front of a noun:

north
south
east
west

northern
southern
eastern
western
countless
occasional
lone
mere
indoor
outdoor


 

We say:

He lives in the eastern district.
There were countless problems with the new machinery.

but we do not say:

The district he lives in is eastern.
The problems with the new machinery were countless.

Comments

hello everyone !
I would like to ask something. Since some pages i found say that the order of adjectives could be : Opinion - Size - Age - Shape - Colour - Origin - Material - Purpose
The order is a little bit different
Would anyone tell me if it is acceptable ?
I would be thankful If you guys could help
Thank you in advanceeeeee !!!!

Hello Cloudy Cloudy

In reality, it's very unusual to use more than a couple of adjectives in a series, so most of the time the order here and whatever order you saw elsewhere will probably yield the same result. We think the most useful order to learn is the one on our page. 

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

In these Adjectives in front of nouns section, this section had contained all of adjective in the guideline that stated above? This means that in these Adjectives in front of nouns is just provided in these sections and no more adjectives. I know my expression is not that good can make any reader can understand what I am asking for. So, I will provide some examples of my question.

For example, examples were given at guideline and are it will some adjectives will also belong to Adjectives in front of nouns section such as "busily" , "honestly".

Thank you in advance that understand what i am asking for.

Hello Backlight

No, the list of adjectives in Adjectives in front of nouns is not comprehensive -- in other words, there are other adjectives like these one. A complete grammar reference for English would be extremely long; what we provide here is what we feel are the most important points for learners of English.

I think I have answered your question, but if not, please feel free to ask us again.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,
I would like to ask if the following are correct
1. This is a casual classic restaurant(does this make sense?)
Thank you in advance

Hello,
I would like to ask if the following is correct
My level in French (language) is enough to speak, but needs improvement.
2.I am far from enough?
Thank you in advance

Hello agie,

You need to include an adjective before 'enough' in the first sentence: '...is high enough to...'

The second sentence does not seem to make sense. I'm not sure why you have 'I' there. You could say 'It is far from enough', where 'it' refers to your level and the word 'high' is omitted because it was used in a previous sentence.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

The problems with the new machinery were countless

Why is this not correct? Couldn't both be correct?

Hello InmaLD

I'm afraid there is no easy way to explain this; it's just the way English is used. Anyone would understand the sentence you propose, but it would sound unnatural to native speakers.

By the way, our House Rules ask you to write only in English so that everyone can understand your comments. I have translated your question into English, but in the future we won't be able to do this for you.

Thanks in advance for your understanding.

All the best

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Hi,

Im so confused. Which one is correct, " Big beautiful house." Or Beautiful big house."? I see sentenced where Size comes first before the quality, how so? Thank you so much.

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