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Overview of Adverbs

We can use adverbs to describe a verb, adjective, or other adverbs.

Let's take a look at the most common ways that we use adverbs. We will cover these in more detail in the following lessons.

1. Adverbs tell more about a verb. These are also called adverbs of manner.

These adverbs are often made by adding "-ly" to the end of an adjective. Adjectives that end in "-y" we drop the "y" and add "-ily".

AdjectiveAdverb
beautifulbeautifully
quickquickly
gracefulgracefully
happyhappily

There are some exceptions. The following words have the same adjective and adverb form.

AdjectiveAdverb
latelate
fastfast
hardhard
earlyearly

Here are some example sentences.
  • We arrived late.
  • They danced beautifully.
  • The train goes very fast.
  • She ran away quickly.
  • She kindly asked us to be quiet.
  • They loudly entered the room.
Do not use "good" as an adverb. Instead, use "well".
  • She can dance well.
  • I can cook well.
2. We can also use adverbs to describe adjectives. These are also called intensifiers.

Look at a few examples.
  • It is very hot.
  • They are really nice.
  • The weather is surprisingly cool today.
  • We are extremely tired.
  • I am physically tired.
3. We can use two adverbs together. We use "intensifier + adverb of manner".
  • We work extremely hard.
  • She can cook very well.
  • The woman is dancing very gracefully in the competition.
4. We can use adverbs of time or frequency to tell when or how often.
  • I will go tomorrow.
  • She went yesterday.
  • I always exercise on Monday.
  • He never smokes.
  • They often went there when they were young.
5. We can use adverbs of place to tell where, in what direction, or the distance.
  • The plane is going up.
  • The elevator is going down.
  • We are going nowhere.
  • She went inside.
  • Let's go outside now.
  • He lives far away.
  • It is nearby.
6. We can use adverbs of certainty to tell how sure we are.
  • I will probably go.
  • They clearly don't know what they are talking about.
  • She surely failed the test.
7. We often use adverbs as the first word of a sentence when we are giving our opinion or commenting on a situation.
  • Honestly, I do not know.
  • Surprisingly, he passed the test.
  • Obviously, we did not prepare enough.
  • Personally, I think it is great.
8. "Also" and "too" are two common adverbs that we need to know.
  • She likes movies. I like movies too.
  • She likes movies. I also like movies.
  • He is American. I am American too.
  • He is American. I am also American.
There are many different adverbs and different ways that we can use adverbs. In the following lessons, we will cover the most common and important English adverbs in detail. There are also many other lessons to help you learn English grammar, speak fluent English, and learn everything else you want to about the English language.

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