Position of Adverbs - Rules


Ajit Kumar AJIT KUMARWISDOM IAS, New Delhi.

Rule 1.  Adverbs of manner, which answer the question 'How?' (e.g., well, fast, quickly, carefully, calmly) are generally placed after the verb or after the object if there is one; as,
 
It was raining heavily.
She speaks English fluently.
He does his work promptly.
 
Rule 2.  Adverbs or adverb phrases of place and of time are also usually placed after the verb or after the object if there is one; as,
He will come here. (Place)
I looked everywhere. (Place)
I met him yesterday. (Time)
They are to be married next week. (Time)
 
Rule 3.  When there are two or more adverbs after a verb (and its object), the normal order is adverb of manner, adverb of place, adverb of time.
She sang well in the concert.
He spoke earnestly at the meeting last night.
 
Rule 4. Adverbs of frequency, which answer the question 'How often?' (e.g., always, never,
often, rarely, usually, generally) and certain other adverbs like almost, already, hardly,
nearly, just, quite are normally put between the subject and the verb if the verb consists of only one word; if there is more than one word in the verb, they are put after the first word.
 
His wife never cooks.
I have often told him to write neatly.
We usually have breakfast at eight.
My uncle has just gone out.
 
Rule 5. If the verb is am/are/is/was, these adverbs are placed after the verb, as
 
I am never late for school.
He is always at home on Sundays.
 
Rule 6. These adverbs are usually put before an auxiliary or the single verb be, when it is stressed:
 
 “Abdul has come late again.” “Yes, he always does come late.”
“When will you write the essay?” “But I already have written it.”
 
Rule 7. The auxiliaries have to and used to prefer the adverb in front of them.
I often have to go to college on foot.
He always used to agree with me.
 
Rule 8. When an adverb modifies an adjective or another adverb, the adverb usually comes before it:
 
John is a rather lazy boy.
The dog was quite dead.
  
Rule 9. But the adverb enough comes after adjective or adverb it modifies:
Is the box big enough?
He was rash enough to interrupt.
He spoke loud enough to be heard.
 
Rule 10. As a general rule, the word ‘only’ .should be placed immediately before the word it modifies:
 
He has slept only three hours.



Thursday, 09th Mar 2017, 12:02:00 PM

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