Do you say handsome, young, three men, or three handsome young men? Adjectives are more challenging than we think because we have to consider their order in sentences. This guide will show you the correct order of adjectives in the English language.
I provided a three-part test to help you practice your understanding of adjective order. Then, check your answer using the answer key.
Order of Adjectives
Sometimes we can use more than one suitable adjective to describe nouns, but it’s important to know what order to list them in. Follow this order when forming phrases or sentences with multiple adjectives and a noun or any noun equivalent.
1. Determiner (e.g., the, some, a, an, these, etc.)
2. Quantity (e.g., One, seven, few, etc.)
3. Opinion (e.g., delicious, intelligent, misunderstood, important, etc.)
- General opinion, which is held by many (e.g., popular)
- Specific opinion, which is personal (e.g., person)
4. Size (e.g., medium, small, huge, enormous, tall, etc.)
5. Age (e.g., new, old, second-newest, etc.)
6. Shape (e.g., round, geometric, square, etc.)
7. Color (e.g., red, yellowish, gray, etc.)
8. Origin/Material (e.g., American, wooden, leather, etc.)
9. Qualifier (e.g., hound dog, leather jacket, pickup truck, etc.)
Here are some examples.
- Three trendy, stylish, nylon bags
- Tall, black gorilla
- Amazing, little, decades-old cup
- A savory, old, Italian recipe
My handy guide has shown you the correct sequence of adjectives when writing sentences. Learning this topic will help you become more descriptive in your writing. For instance, instead of only saying big truck, you can say big white pickup truck.
Don’t forget to answer the worksheets. Then, after taking each quiz, check your answers with the answer key.