Adjectives


An adjective is used to describe someone or something.

An adjective gives more information in a sentence, for example:

  • The frail, old woman found it difficult to walk unaided. She was cautious and careful.

Adjectives describe someone (i.e. the 'woman' and 'she' in the above example). There are several kinds of adjectives.

Describing adjectives

These are the most common and describe  a person, place or thing.

Examples

  • intelligent
  • beautiful
  • tall
  • spindly
  • obese
  • shy
  • green
  • athletic
  • clever
  • shiny

Used in a sentence:

  • The shiny coin flashed in the sunlight.
  • The beautiful, white cat strutted across the garden.

Proper adjectives

These are proper nouns used as adjectives.

Examples

  • Australian native animals are unique.
  • The June rain is ideal for plants.

Adjectives of order

These tell position.

Examples

  • first
  • third
  • last

Used in a sentence:

  • He was the last boy in the queue.
  • She was in third place in her age race.

Possessive adjectives

These tell who something belongs to.

Examples

  • my
  • his
  • her
  • their
  • your
  • its
  • our

Used in a sentence:

  • This is our garden.
  • Is this your magazine?

Numbering adjectives

These tell how many.

Examples

  • two
  • thirty
  • many
  • several
  • lots of
  • each
  • every
  • most
  • several
  • few

Used in a sentence:

  • There were several girls in the play.
  • There were five levels in the building.

Compound adjectives

These are adjectives joined by hyphens.

Examples

  • half-ripe
  • feather-light
  • fast-moving
  • well-developed

Used in a sentence:

  • The feather-light sponge won first prize.

More information

More about adjectives in our Teaching strategies section.

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