Let’s start by explaining what the definition of an adverb is… Am I right in thinking that you were taught that an adverb modifies a verb and ends in ‘ly’? Although this is correct, adverbs go much deeper than that. Adverbs of manner tend to end in ‘ly’, but guess what? There is more than one type of adverb which we’ll go into later.
Firstly, they are one of the ‘parts of speech’. Their function is to provide information about how, how often, when, or where something happens. Adverbs can modify adjectives, other adverbs, determiners, clauses, prepositions, verbs or sentences.
FUN FACT: There are over 250 adverbs in English. Some words however are not always used as an adverb (depending on the sentence construction). They can be adjectives, conjunctions, interjections, nouns, prepositions, or pronouns.
Right, let’s start learning adverbs. I’ll kick off with some easy examples:
- He runs quickly – the adverb ‘quickly’ modifies the verb ‘run’.
- He runs very quickly – the adverb ‘very’ modifies the adverb ‘quickly’
- He is an extremely quick runner – the adverb ‘extremely’ modifies the adjective ‘quick’.
adverbs that modify verbs
You’ve seen some examples of adverbs in use, let’s delve deeper… When an adverb modifies a verb, it usually tells us how, when, where, in what manner, or to what extent the action is performed. Let’s take a look.
adverbs that modify adjectives
Adverbs can also modify adjectives. The purpose is to add a degree of intensity to the adjective. Let’s take a look at some examples.
adverbs that modify other adverbs
They can also modify other adverbs as seen in the pictures below.
different types of adverbs
Now you know what an adverb does and how to spot one. Let’s look a little deeper into the different types of adverbs including:
- adverbs of frequency
- adverbs of time
- adverbs of manner
- adverbs of place
Click on the links below to learn about the different types of adverbs with picture examples.