Adjectives



Grammar. any member of a class of words that modify nouns and pronouns, primarily by describing a particular quality of the word they are modifying, as wise in a wise grandmother, or perfect in a perfect score, or handsome in He is extremely handsome. Other terms, as numbers (one cup; twelve months), certain demonstrative pronouns (this magazine; those questions), and terms that impose limits (each person; no mercy) can also function adjectivally, as can some nouns that are found chiefly in fixed phrases where they immediately precede the noun they modify, as bottle in bottle cap and bus in bus station.
Synonyms: modifier, qualifier, identifier, describer, describing word.
pertaining to or functioning as an adjective; :
the adjective use of a noun.
Law. concerning methods of enforcement of legal rights, as pleading and practice (opposed to ).
(of dye colors) requiring a mordant or the like to render them permanent (opposed to ).
Archaic. not able to stand alone; dependent:
Women were seen by some (by some men, that is) as adjective creatures, needing to be cared for and protected from the vicissitudes of life.
Contemporary Examples

What adjectives did Mitt pencil into his draft before landing on that one?
Analyzing the Political Humor of Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Mitt Romney Mark Katz February 14, 2012

Cruel, nasty, and scary are the adjectives commonly used to describe him by the friends, colleagues, and relatives Shields quotes.
Kurt Vonnegut Biography Reveals an Unhappy and Nasty Writer Wendy Smith November 28, 2011

Pinker notes that roughly a fifth of English verbs began life as nouns or adjectives.
Go Ahead, End With a Preposition: Grammar Rules We All Can Live With Nick Romeo November 2, 2014

With his adjectives, his body language, and so on, he can signal to people, well, I don’t really care about this all that much.
Previewing the Big Dog Michael Tomasky September 4, 2012

Nouns are adjectives, subjects disagree with objects, modifiers dangle, malapropisms abound.
The Gpistolary Novel: Tao Lin’s ‘Taipei’ Emily Witt June 17, 2013

Historical Examples

The adjectives are remarkable, for they seem to suggest a contrast.
Domesday Book and Beyond Frederic William Maitland

By the time he told his mother he was come to quoting Hurst’s adjectives as his own.
Stories of a Western Town Octave Thanet

Remember these adjectives are nouns when they do the work of nouns.
Plain English Marian Wharton

Why do substantives often differ in meaning from the verbs to which they are related, adverbs from adjectives?
Cratylus Plato

The profuse family use of adjectives and verbs, which they unearth for themselves, was very entertaining.
The Story of My Life, volumes 4-6 Augustus J. C. Hare

noun

a word imputing a characteristic to a noun or pronoun
(as modifier): an adjective phrase, adj

adjective
additional or dependent
(of law) relating to court practice and procedure, as opposed to the principles of law dealt with by the courts Compare substantive (sense 7)

late 14c., as an adjective, “adjectival,” in noun adjective, from Old French adjectif (14c.), from Latin adjectivum “that is added to (the noun),” neuter of adjectivus “added,” from past participle of adicere “to throw or place (a thing) near,” from ad- “to” (see ad-) + comb. form of iacere “to throw” (see jet (v.)). Also as a noun from late 14c. (adjectives not clearly distinguished from nouns in Middle English). In 19c. Britain, the word itself often was a euphemism for the taboo adjective bloody.

They … slept until it was cool enough to go out with their ‘Towny,’ whose vocabulary contained less than six hundred words, and the Adjective. [Kipling, “Soldiers Three,” 1888]

A part of speech that describes a noun or pronoun. Adjectives are usually placed just before the words they qualify: shy child, blue notebook, rotten apple, four horses, another table.

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  • Adjectivize

    Grammar. to make into an adjective, as by adding a suffix: The noun mirth can be adjectivized by adding -ful or -less to form the adjectives mirthful and mirthless. to apply adjectives to; describe: He tends to adjectivize himself as loyal and trustworthy, but that is far from accurate. to overdescribe: She adjectivizes in agonizing […]

  • Adjectivization

    Grammar. to make into an adjective, as by adding a suffix: The noun mirth can be adjectivized by adding -ful or -less to form the adjectives mirthful and mirthless. to apply adjectives to; describe: He tends to adjectivize himself as loyal and trustworthy, but that is far from accurate. to overdescribe: She adjectivizes in agonizing […]



  • Adjoin

    to be close to or in contact with; abut on: His property adjoins the lake. to attach or append; affix. to be in connection or contact: the point where the estates adjoin. Contemporary Examples Companies tend to create oil palm plantations in large tracts, many of which adjoin neighboring plantations. Our Taste for Cheap Palm […]

  • Adjigo

    noun a yam plant, Dioscorea hastifolia, native to SW Australia that has edible tubers



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