KINDS OF ADVERB:
- Adverbs of Manner
- Adverbs of Place
- Adverbs of Time
- Adverbs of Frequency (Literally, this can be counted as Adverb of Time, because they also talk about time.)
- Adverbs of Degree
- Adverbs of Purpose
- Adverbs of Certainty
- Linking Adverbs (or conjunctive adverbs)
- Adding in Positive and Negative Sentences
- Prepositional Adverbs (or Particles)
- Interrogative Adverbs
- Relative Adverbs
Adverbs of Manner describe how something is done. They answer the question, “How”.
quickly, slowly, elegantly, rationally, thoughtfully, clumsily, expertly
He ran fast. How did he run? The word fast tells us how he ran and is an adverb.
He thoughtfully read the book. How did he read the book? thoughtfully tells us how he read the book and is an adverb.
Adverbs of Place describe where something happens. Most adverbs of place are also used as prepositions. Some commonly used examples include the following:
Abroad, anywhere, upstairs, downstairs, here, in, nowhere, out, outside, somewhere, there, underground, about, above, anywhere, away, back, backwards (also backward), behind, below, down, east (etc), elsewhere, far, indoors, inside, near, nearby, off, on, over, towards, under, up, where.
She went upstairs. Where did she go? And the answer is the adverb, upstairs.
Adverbs of Time describe when an action happened, but also for how long, and how often. The following adverbs are commonly used in this way.
Points of time (definite):
Now, then, today, tomorrow, tonight, yesterday.
Relationships in time (indefinite):
Already, before, early, earlier, eventually, finally, first, formerly, just, last, late, later, lately, next, previously, recently, since, soon, still, yet.
He came home before dark.
It will be too dark to play outside soon.
Jessica finished her supper first.
Andy left school early.
Adverbs of Frequency tell us how often something happens.
Use adverbs of frequency to say how often you do something. Adverbs of frequency are often used with the present simple because they indicate repeated or routine activities. For example, They often go out for dinner.
- Indefinite Adverbs of Frequency
Frequency Adverb of Frequency Example Sentence
100% always I always go to bed before 11pm.
90% usually I usually have cereal for breakfast.
80% normally / generally I normally go to the gym.
70% often* / frequently I often surf the internet.
50% sometimes I sometimes forget my wife’s birthday.
30% occasionally I occasionally eat junk food.
10% seldom I seldom read the newspaper.
5% hardly ever / rarely I hardly ever drink alcohol.
0% never I never swim in the sea.
Some people pronounce the ‘T’ in often but many others do not.
constantly and regularly are also included.
The Position of the Adverb in a Sentence
An adverb of frequency goes before a main verb (except with To Be). Subject + adverb + main verb
I always remember to do my homework.
He normally gets good marks in exams.
An adverb of frequency goes after the verb To Be. Subject + to be + adverb
They are never pleased to see me.
She isn’t usually bad tempered.
When we use an auxiliary verb (have, will, must, might, could, would, can, etc.), the adverb is placed between the auxiliary and the main verb. Subject + auxiliary + adverb + main verb
She can sometimes beat me in a race.
I would hardly ever be unkind to someone.
They might never see each other again.
They could occasionally be heard laughing.
We can also use the following adverbs at the start of a sentence:
Usually, normally, often, frequently, sometimes, occasionally
Occasionally, I like to eat Thai food.
We use hardly ever and never with positive, not negative verbs:
She hardly ever comes to my parties.
They never say ‘thank you’.
We use ever in questions and negative statements:
Have you ever been to New Zealand?
I haven’t ever been to Switzerland. (The same as ‘I have never been Switzerland’).
We can also use the following expressions when we want to be more specific about the frequency:
– every day – once a month – twice a year – four times a day – every other week
Definite Adverbs of Frequency
Annually, daily, fortnightly, hourly, monthly, nightly, quarterly, weekly, yearly.
Adverbs of Degree often modify an adjective. They answer the question, “To what extent?”
very, too, slightly, excessively, so, quite, rather, almost, absolutely, barely, completely, decidedly, deeply, enough, enormously, entirely, extremely, fairly, far, fully, greatly, hardly, highly, how, incredibly, indeed, intensely, just, least, less, little, lots, most, much, nearly, perfectly, positively, practically, pretty, purely, really, scarcely, simply, so, somewhat, strongly, terribly, thoroughly, totally, utterly, virtually, well.
The horse is too tired.
He is so intelligent.
Adverbs of purpose describe why something happens. Here are some common examples:
so, so that, to, in order to, because, since, accidentally, intentionally, purposely.
Jenny walks carefully to avoid falling.
Bob accidentally broke the vase.
ADVERBS OF CERTAINTY express how certain or sure we feel about an action or event.
certainly, definitely, probably, undoubtedly, surely
Example: Undoubtedly, Winston Churchill was a great politician.
Adverbs of certainty go before the main verb but after the verb ‘to be’:
He definitely left the house this morning.
He is probably in the park.
With other auxiliary verb, these adverbs go between the auxiliary and the main verb:
He has certainly forgotten the meeting.
He will probably remember tomorrow.
Sometimes these adverbs can be placed at the beginning of the sentence:
Undoubtedly, Winston Churchill was a great politician.
BE CAREFUL! with surely. When it is placed at the beginning of the sentence, it means the speaker thinks something is true, but is looking for confirmation:
- Surely you’ve got a bicycle?
Linking Adverbs (or conjunctive adverbs) link the current sentence to a previous one. They are sometimes called transition words. They differ from conjunctions, which link nouns, phrases or clauses. Unlike a conjunction, linking adverbs can often be omitted without making the sentence ungrammatical.
They connect two independent clauses or sentences.
They can be used at the beginning of a sentence or mid-sentence with punctuation.
Hence, afterwards, then, nonetheless, therefore, beforehand
Words which are normally considered conjunctions, such as and, but, for, nor, yet, and or are considered linking adverbs when they begin a sentence. Conjunctions cannot be used to begin a sentence, because they link two words or two clauses, not two sentences. But words which look like conjunctions, when acting as linking adverbs, can be so used.
She hated cricket. And she hated soccer even more. She hated cricket. She hated soccer even more.
And is a linking adverb not a conjunction. It, unlike a conjunction, can be omitted without drastically affecting the sentences. Also, unlike a conjunction, it does not link two words or clauses, but links two sentences.
Because they link sentences, not clauses, linking adverbs are always preceded by a full stop or a semicolon. For instance:
Bob does not like sport; hence, he isn’t coming to the game. Bob does not like sport; he isn’t coming to the game.
Bob does not like sport. Hence, he isn’t coming to the game. Bob does not like sport. He isn’t coming to the game.
In the above sentences, we can omit the linking adverb, hence, and the sentences remain grammatical and still make sense. (Of course, we also need to omit the comma, and need to capitalize the first word of the sentence).
Addition Alternative Cause-Effect Comparison Condition Contrast Emphasis
Furthermore Otherwise Therefore In the same way Otherwise Nevertheless Indeed
In addition Rather Consequently Similarly In the event Nonetheless In fact
Moreover As a consequence In contrast Anyway On the other hand
Additionally As a result Unlike In contrast to
Prepositional Adverbs (or Particles)
Prepositional adverbs have the word form of a preposition, but function as an adverb, that is they modify verbs, often saying where the action takes place.
Some shady characters were hanging around.
We stayed in.
Put that down!
It was living inside.
She lives opposite.
We examined it through and through.
All the underlined words used above are prepositional adverbs. They differ from prepositions in that they modify a verb (adverbial) and they do not stand before a noun.
Prepositional adverbs are used to form phrasal verbs. When they do this, they change the meaning of the verb. That is, act as an adverb by modifying a verb. For instance: Phrasal Verbs
INTERROGATIVE ADVERBS answer the questions How? When? Where? and Why?, but these words themselves are adverbs. They may be used as interrogative adverbs at the beginning of direct questions.
Where do you live?
When will you visit again Singapore?
Why have you not played well in the game?
Where did you get this beautiful dress?
How have you solved this problem?
How are you?
Who is your friend?
What happened to your old car?
RELATIVE ADVERB: is an adverb which introduces a relative clause. The English relative adverbs are: where, why, how, when, whenever and wherever.
The house where I live in is very small.
I will never forget the day when I met Jane.
There must be some reason why he cried.
Can you tell me how it is done?
Susie takes her cell phone wherever she goes.
I read books whenever I get time.
The relative adverb when can be replaced by in which/on which; where can be replaced by in which/at which; why can be replaced by for which.
I don’t know the place where he lives. (= I don’t know the place at which he lives.)
I don’t know the reason why she hates me. (= I don’t know the reason for which she hates me.)
I still remember the day when he returned home. (= I still remember the day on which he returned home.)
Adding in Positive and Negative Sentences
Some adverbs have the effect of adding or subtracting.
I went fishing. So did Harry.
I went fishing. Harry went too.
I went fishing. Harry went also.
The adverbs so, also and too add some of the meaning of the first sentence in the pairs above to the second one. They have the idea of in addition.
In these sentences:
Teresa did not go. Nor did I. (I, too, did not go.)
Teresa did not go. Neither did I.
Teresa did not go. I didn’t either.
The words nor, neither and either also have the idea of in addition (too), and are used in negative expressions.
Words used like this include:
neither, nor, too, so, either, else, also