Adverbs are words that modify, or add context to, a verb. Note that adverbs are similar to adjectives in some ways. Adjectives however modify, or give specifc characteristics to, nouns.
If you would like to read about adjectives after you have finished reading this page about adverbs, take a look at the Write Correctly What is an Adjective? page.
Adverbs give specific characteristics to verbs. Note that verbs are doing words (click here to read more about verbs), therefore most adverbs express something quantifiable, or content defining, that relates to the action that the verb describes.
The word ‘adverb‘ is a noun.
This is because ‘adverb’ is the name of the class of word that modifies or adds characteristics to a verb.
List of Adverbs
Adverbs include words such as:
In the list above, we have tried to link antagonistic (opposing) adverbs i.e. quietly is opposite to loudly, and gently is the opposite of forcefully, etc.
Adverbs are considered to be one of the main classes of word. The classes of words in the English language are usually referred to as nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs (the 4 main classes of word), and also include pronouns, conjunctions, prepositions, interjections, articles, numerals, and determiners.
The word ‘adverb’ is derived from two Latin words – Ad, which means ‘to’ and verbum, which means ‘word’. A literal translation of adverbum would be ‘to’-‘word’. ‘Adverbum’ has been shortened over time to ‘adverb’.
What are Adverbs?
The word adverb is defined in the Cambridge Dictionary as:
‘a word that describes or gives more information about a verb, adjective, adverb, or phrase‘
‘a word that describes or gives more information about another word, esp. a verb, adjective, or other adverb, or about a phrase‘
Example Sentences that Include Adverbs
- The members of the choir were all singing loudly (In this example, singing is the ‘verb’, and ‘loudly’ is the adverb)
- The car is being driven quickly (In this example, ‘driven’ is the verb, and ‘quickly’ is the adverb)
- The man folded all his clothes very carefully before packing his suitcase (In this example, ‘folded’ is the verb, and ‘carefully is the adverb)
- David forcefully closed the door in order to make sure it was shut fully (In this example, ‘closed’ is the verb, and ‘forcefully’ is the adverb)
Hopefully, this page has helped you to understand adverbs and how an adverb can be used in a sentence.
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