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Adjectives to Adverbs

Adjectives to Adverbs

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Adverbs – Adjectives to Adverbs


Hello! In this lesson, we will learn to change some adjectives to adverbs. As we learned in a previous lesson, adjectives are words that modify nouns or pronouns; that is, they give us more information about nouns and pronouns. We can change the form of some adjectives to form adverbs, which can modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs.

For example, using the adjective "hungry", we can form the sentence "David is hungry.". In this sentence, the adjective "hungry" modifies the noun "David". By using the adverb "hungrily," we can form the sentence "David eats hungrily." In this sentence, the adverb "hungrily" modifies or tells us more about the verb "eats.".

The process of forming an adverb from an adjective is often accomplished by adding "ly" to the end of the adjective. Take a look at this list of adjectives and corresponding adverbs:

"sad – sadly"

"bad – badly"

"cheap – cheaply"

"clean – cleanly"

"expensive – expensively"

"different – differently"

"dark – darkly"

"false – falsely"

To form adverbs from adjectives that end in "y", we change the "y' to "i" and add "ly". Take a look at this list of adjectives and corresponding adverbs:

"happy – happily"

"angry – angrily"

"pretty – prettily"

"hungry – hungrily"

"easy – easily"

For adjectives that end in "-ful", we double the "l" and add "y."
"beautiful – beautifully"

For example, we might say "David and Jennifer dance beautifully."
For adjectives that end in a vowel followed by "e", we take away the "e" and add "ly".

"true  - truly"
For example, we might say "Jennifer truly likes to dance."
There are, of course, exceptions to these processes. For example, the most common adjective is "good", and we must memorize its corresponding adverb. The adverb which corresponds to "good" is "well".
For example, we can say "David and Jennifer dance well.", or "The baby eats well.".

Some adverbs are the same as their corresponding adjectives. Look at these examples of adjectives and their corresponding adverbs:

"fast – fast"

"hard – hard"

For example, the adjective "hard" is used in the following sentence: "The job is hard." Notice that the word "hard" modifies the noun "job." The adverb "hard" is used in the following sentence: "Jennifer works hard.". The adverb "hard" modifies the verb "works.".

A commonly-used adverb is "very". The adverb "very" can be used to intensify an adjective or another adverb.  In the following sentence, the adverb "very" intensifies the adjective "happy".  "Jennifer is very happy.". In the following sentence the adverb "very" intensifies another adverb  "David and Jennifer dance very well.".

Now that you have an understanding of the use and formation of adverbs in English, listen to the dialog.

David:  I worked hard today.

Jennifer:  Was your boss happy?

David: He talked happily.

Jennifer: Did he truly talk happily?

David: Yes, very happily.

Jennifer: Did you walk to work?

David: Yes, I walked very fast!


Now that you have an understanding of the usage of adverbs in English, let us take a closer look at the sentences in the dialog.

At first, David says "I worked hard today.". In this sentence, the word "hard" is an adverb. The adverb "hard" modifies the verb "worked.". The adverb "hard" tells how David worked.

 Jennifer asks "Was your boss happy?". The word "happy" is an adjective. The adjective "happy" modifies the word "boss". David answers "He talked happily.". Notice that the word "happily" is an adverb that was formed from the adjective "happy". See that the adjective "happy" ends in a "y". We changed the "y" to "I" and added "ly" to form the adverb "happily". The adverb "happily" modifies the verb "talked". The adverb "happily" tells how the boss talked.

Jennifer asks "Did he truly talk happily?". In this case, the adverb "truly" refers to the phrase "talk happily". Jennifer wants to know if the boss was really happy.  David answers, "Yes, very happily.". Notice that David uses the adverb "very" to modify the adverb "happily".

After Jennifer asks "Did you walk to work?", David answers "Yes, I walked very fast!". I this case, the word "fast" is an adverb which modifies the verb "walked". The adverb "fast" tells how he walked. The adverb "very" modifies the adverb "fast". The adverb "very" tells how fast.

Listen to the dialog again, paying special attention to the use of adverbs:

David:  I worked hard today.

Jennifer:  Was your boss happy?

David: He talked happily.

Jennifer: Did he truly talk happily?

David: Yes, very happily.

Jennifer: Did you walk to work?

David: Yes, I walked very fast!

Very good! You have mastered a very important concept in English – the usage of adverbs will multiply your ability to describe actions and express intensified descriptive adjectives. Your English is becoming more nuanced as you learned more new ways to manipulate phrasing and express your ideas. Take advantage of your new skills by noticing and describing the activities that you see around you. Discuss and describe the activities in your English conversations.