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Parts of Speech Review: Adjectives

An adjective is a word used to modify (or describe) a noun or pronoun. An adjective usually answers one of these questions: Which one? What kind? How many?

Example:

I went to a crazy party last Halloween.

She has a really strange voice; it's more rough and rugged than you'd expect.

He's one of the tallest people I know.

 

Sometimes pronouns function as adjectives. Some or many can answer the question "how many?" and therefore sometimes function as adjectives. This is one case in which adjectives and pronouns become confusing. Itís a case of form verses function, and itís really not that important.

Example:


Some will go to the party. (Here some functions more as a pronoun than as an adjective)

Some people will go to the party. (Here some functions more as an adjective than as an
adjective because it modifies/describes people.)

Exercise:

Underline each of the following adjectives in the sentences below:

  1. I had a really goofy, but brilliant, philosophy professor in college.
  2. He was a tall and lanky man who was about 60 years old at the time
  3. Because he was also a priest, he wore black clothing most of the time, but he delivered the most colorful lectures in class.
  4. He used to get so into his amazing lectures, that he would sort of lose control of himself.
  5. He wore these nerdy glasses that were thick and awkward on his face.
  6. One day while he was lecturing, he crawled on top of a small wooden table sitting in the corner of the room.
  7. As he talked he wrapped his arms around his skinny legs and pulled his knees up into his chest.
  8. He looked like a little ball, wrapped up on top of the table, talking to a group of captivated students.
  9. During the middle of one of his most interesting lectures, his nerdy glasses, which he had had taken off and propped up on the top of his balding head, and held in place by only his thinning gray hair, began to teeter off to one side.
  10. He was concentrating so hard on what he was saying that none of us wanted to say anything about the dangerous situation his glasses were in.
  11. It was a very funny situation because several students noticed that we all had worried looks on our faces and were fearing the same thingóthat his glasses would fall off his head and brake into tiny pieces on the hard classroom floor.
  12. Then it happened. The glasses fell, but he grabbed them with a magnificent and graceful swipe of his right hand.