Types of Adverbs

Adverbs give us a description of a verb in a sentence. There are five basic types of adverbs in the English language.

Intermediate
"Types of Adverbs" in English Grammar

What Are Adverbs?

Adverbs are words that add more information to a verb, an adjective, a phrase or another adverb. It tells when, where, and how an action is performed or indicates the quality or degree of the action.

Types of Adverbs

Here are the types of adverbs in the English language:

Adverbs of Manner

Adverbs of manner answer the question 'how is the action performed?' Adverbs of manner are probably the most common of all adverbs. Most of them will end in –ly.

Please could you speak more slowly?

She sings beautifully.

‘I'm so sorry,’ she said sadly.

Adverbs of Time

An adverb of time tells us about 'when' a verb takes place; it also tells us for 'how long'. They are extremely common in English. Adverbs of time are usually placed at the beginning or end of a sentence.

When?

Adverbs answering to the question 'when?' are usually placed at the end of the sentence.

Where are you living now?

She's leaving tomorrow.

I've got a piano lesson later today.

Putting an adverb of time at the end of a sentence is the most common position, but these adverbs can be put in other positions to give a different emphasis.

Now I have to leave.

How Long?

Adverbs answering to the question 'how long?' are also usually placed at the end of the sentence.

I was waiting here all day.

Sometimes adverbial phrases that answer to the question 'how long?' is followed by two propositions: for and since.

  • for is always followed by an expression of duration,
  • since is always followed by an expression of a point in time.

I'm going away for a few days.

She's been off work since Tuesday.

'beautifully' is an example of adverbs of manner

Adverbs of Movement and Direction

Adverbs of movement describe a verb that implies an activity or a certain movement.
Adverbs of direction point to a particular direction.

We are taking the dog outside.

They are putting the phone away.

Adverbs of Frequency

Adverbs of frequency tell us 'how often' is the frequency of an action.
They are usually placed:

She always arrives at 7.30.

You must always fasten your seat belt.

I'm usually home by 6 o'clock.

Adverbs of Degree

Degree adverbs express the degree or level of the action in the sentence. They answer the question 'how much is the action performed?'. Adverbs of degree are usually placed before the adjective, adverb, or verb that they modify, but that is not always the case.

It's too late to do anything about it now.

I'm very grateful.

I was somewhat surprised to see him.

Adverbs of Place

Adverbs of place are used to indicate where an action or event occurred. Note that adverbs of place do not modify adjectives or other adverbs.

I was trying to tell her to stay here.

He should be at the hospital. He said was going there.

Adverbs of Probability

Adverbs of probability (also known as adverbs of certainty) express the level of our certainty towards a certain action or event. Most of these adverbs are attached to -ly (not all of them follow this rule).

Maybe he is trying to reconnect.

It certainly wasn't her fault.

Demonstrative Adverbs

There are only two demonstrative adverbs:

'This' and 'that' indicate the distance of an event or situation.

I had no idea she is this beautiful.

My last workplace wasn't that good.

Relative Adverb

Relative adverbs join clauses together. Three main relative adverbs include:

This is where I spent my childhood.

I remember when I met you for the first time.

Interrogative Adverbs

Interrogative adverbs ask questions. These questions may be direct or indirect. We have different types of interrogative adverbs.

  • interrogative adverbs of time
  • interrogative adverbs of place
  • interrogative adverbs of reason
  • interrogative adverbs of manner

Why are they here?

How is she doing this?

Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctive adverbs are adverbs or adverbial phrases that link two clauses. They can be used to express cause and effect, time, comparison, and contrast. These adverbs include: because, besides, however, and therefore.

I love this jacket. However, it is too expensive.

He was popular because of his good behavior.

Viewpoint and Commenting Adverbs

Adverbs modify the verb of a sentence. However, viewpoint and commenting adverbs modify the sentence as a whole. These adverbs indicate the attitude of the speaker towards a particular situation.

Apparently, she is suffering from a head trauma.

He is definitely handsome.

Review

Adverbs are words that modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. There are several types of adverbs as follows:

  • Adverbs of Manner
  • Adverbs of Time
  • Adverbs of Place and Direction
  • Adverbs of Frequency
  • Adverbs of Degree
adverbs of manner answer the question 'how is the action performed?' He shouted angrily at the baby.
adverbs of time tells us about 'when' a verb takes place; it also tells us for 'how long'. I have an important exam, today.
adverbs of frequency tell us 'how often' is the frequency of an action I can never sleep in a cold room.
adverbs of degree express the degree or level of the action in the sentence. He couldn't speak in English well.

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Adverb Placement and Order

We can put adverbs at the front, in the middle, or at the end of a clause. Each can have its own function. We'll also learn about the orders of adverbs.

Comparative and Superlative Adverbs

Adverbs are used to modify adjectives adverbs and verbs, but what if we want to make a comparison between things by using these adverbs? Read more.

Adverbs of Place

Adverbs of place help us express where the verb is taking place. Using them will help us be more accurate about locations.

Adverbs of Time

'Adverbs of time' give you some information about the time something happened. Using them will help us add details about time to our sentences.

Adverbs of Frequency

Adverbs of frequency show us how often an action takes place. We use them commonly in daily English so, it is essential to learn them. Read here.

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