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The Position of Adjectives

The order in which we use adjectives in a series is confusing for people learning English, including many native speakers. It takes a lot of practise with a language before this order becomes instinctive, because the order often seems quite arbitrary. There is, however, a pattern. You will find many exceptions, two common patterns are:

Observation, Size, Shape, Age, Colour, Origin, Material, Qualifier.
Opinion, Size, Age, Shape, Colour, Origin, Material, Purpose.

Which pattern you choose depends on the context and syntax involved. Very few people have this skill and those that do often go on to become professional writers.

Unlike adverbs, adjectives nearly always appear immediately before the noun or noun phrase that they modify. Sometimes they appear in a string of adjectives, and when they do, they appear in a set order according to category.

For example:

Observation, Size, Shape, Age, Colour, Origin, Material, Qualifier, Noun.

A beautiful petite slender young black-haired Javanese selfless understanding woman.

When adjectives belong to the same class, they become coordinated adjectives, and you put a comma between them:

The delicious, expensive chocolates.

The rule for inserting the comma is if you could have inserted a conjunction — and or but — between the two adjectives, use a comma.

When using three or more coordinated adjectives don’t insert a comma between the last adjective and the noun.

An expensive, gorgeous, and revealing dress.

Can you add to these examples.

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