The Adjective

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  • Topic: Superlative, Adverb, Adjective
  • Pages : 20 (5834 words )
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  • Published : October 24, 2008
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The Adjective is a notional part of speech expressing quality of substance. The main syntactical function of an adjective in the sentence is that of an attribute. e.g. It was a sunny day. The snow fell in large, fluffy flakes. Little Dorothy became a very good dressmaker. The adjective may also be used as a predicative in the nominal (compound) predicate: e.g. The day was sunny. The snowflakes were large and fluffy. The adjective is modified by an adverb which has the syntactical function of an adverbial modifier to the adjective: e.g. Are you quite ready? It is rather chilly today.

In Old English Adjectives were inflected for case, number and gender, agreeing with the noun they modified. But in the course of time these inflexions leveled to -e and finally discarded (at the end of the Middle English period, 1400-1500). Thus in Modern English adjectives have no inflexions of case, number or gender. The only change of form that adjectives undergo is for degrees of comparison: long, longer, longest (synthetical forms); beautiful, more beautiful, most beautiful (analytical forms). e.g. That was the longest way to the castle.

Modern women live longer life.
1.As to word-building, the adjective possesses some typical suffixes, such as: -ful
e.g. - June is a beauty;
- Yes, I know June is beautiful.
Tom doesn’t take risks when he’s driving. He is always careful. But what I saw was a peaceful landscape dotted with one man ploughing with a dun mule. (O’Henry “The Ransom of the Red Chief” p.4)

It is useless for you or the most skilful detectives to attempt to find him. (O’Henry “The Ransom of the Red Chief” p.6) -less
e.g. They are lacking in tact. I thought they are in tactless. -Mary is to blame in this matter;
-Yes, I know Mary is blameless.

-There weren’t any clouds in the sky;
-I know the sky was cloudless.

"It sounds harmless to me. I guess Mr. Bill will help you foil the pesky savages." (O’Henry “The Ransom of the Red Chief” p.6)

-like
e.g. - Tom trusts people so much;
- Yes, I know he is childlike.

-ish
e.g. - That boy looks rather stupid;
- No, that boy looks foolish.

And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house. (O’Henry “The Gift of the Magi” p.26) -ed

e.g. You should eat different types of food. Your diet should be well-balanced.
Jane said that she likes blue-eyed boys with nice appearance and character. -ible
e.g. Rose looks terrible after her staying in a hospital so long.
You should be more responsible as to your work.
Food can be tasteless often inedible.
You had better come at night, for the neighbors believe he is lost, and I couldn't be responsible for what they would do to anybody they saw bringing him back. (O’Henry “The Ransom of the Red Chief” p.8)

-able
e.g. While we were on our holidays we spend some days in a hotel which was sub-standard. Service lamentable, third-rate. The father was respectable and tight, a mortgage fancier and a stern, upright collection-plate passer and forecloser. (O’Henry “The Ransom of the Red Chief” p.9)

-ant
e.g. Come to sunny Sandshire gorgeous beaches, pleasant climate and what not.
Visiting her parents was really something significant for us her.
She is always well-dressed, smart and elegant.
With a whirl of skirts and with the brilliant sparkle still in her eyes, she fluttered out the door and down the stairs to the street. (O’Henry “The Gift of the Magi” p.26)

-ent
e.g. Let’s visit Carpathian mountains magnificent views, stimulating atmosphere, delightful for a holiday.
Mary was a graceful mover and of course super-efficient at her job, and a gifted musician, bright-intelligent and clever. Bill and me had a joint capital of about six hundred dollars, and we needed just two thousand dollars more to pull off a fraudulent town-lot scheme in Western Illinois with....
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