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Order of adjectives

How to order adjectives in English

In many languages, adjectives denoting attributes usually occur in a specific order. Generally, the adjective order in English is:

  1. Quantity or number
  2. Quality or opinion
  3. Size
  4. Age
  5. Shape
  6. Color
  7. Proper adjective (often nationality, other place of origin, or material)
  8. Purpose or qualifier

For example:

  1. I love that really big old green antique car that always parked at the end of the street.
  2. My sister adopted a beautiful big white bulldog.

When there are two or more adjectives that are from the same group, the word and is placed between the two adjectives:

  1. The house is green and red.
  2. The library has old and new books.

When there are three or more adjectives from the same adjective group, place a comma between each of the coordinate adjectives:

  1. We live in the big green, white and red house at the end of the street.
  2. My friend lost a red, black and white watch.

A comma is not placed between an adjective and the noun.


Order of adjectives – examples

Determiner Quantity or number Quality or opinion Size Age Shape Color Proper adjective Purpose or qualifier Noun
A beautiful old Italian sports car
The three beautiful little gold plates
An amazing heart-shaped red and white sofa

More examples:

  1. I love that really old big green antique car that always parked at the end of the street. [quality - age - size - color - proper adjective]
  2. My sister has a big, beautiful, tan and white, bulldog. [size - quality - color - color]
  3. A wonderful old Italian clock. [opinion - age - origin]
  4. A big square blue box. [dimension - shape - color]
  5. A disgusting pink plastic ornament. [opinion - color - material]
  6. Some slim new French trousers. [dimension - age - origin]
  7. A wonderful old Italian clock. [opinion - age - origin]
  8. I bought a pair of black leather shoes. [color - material]

Order of adjectives exercises

Coming soon