Results 1 to 3 of 3
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Oct 2009
    • Posts: 44
    • Post Thanks / Like

    Determiners versus adjectives

    Are determiners categorized as adjectives. In other words, are determiners a subdivision of adjectives?

    • Join Date: Nov 2009
    • Posts: 40
    • Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Determiners versus adjectives

    Yes. :)

    (Shortest answer I've ever given here!)

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Jan 2009
    • Posts: 1,507
    • Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Determiners versus adjectives

    Actually - sorry, but - no, they are not! They are fundamentally separate classifications.

    An ADJECTIVE is a member of a traditional form-class - the simplest, most basic way of dividing up words according to their normal/'canonical' grammatical function. Although in former times the term embraced even articles, by a somewhat more restrictive modern definition, adjectives are words that fall into one of two main categories, descriptive and determinative:

    DESCRIPTIVE adjectives are the words that we most commonly think of when the term 'adjective' is mentioned, such as 'big, happy, red', etc. These can generally occur either attributively (i.e. directly before their noun referent, as modifiers) or predicatively (i.e. in the predicate of the sentence, as complements). Thus I can use 'red' as a modifier in a red ball or as a complement in

    The ball is red.

    Either way, the word 'red', relating descriptively to the noun 'ball', is an adjective.

    DETERMINATIVE adjectives are, as their name implies, a sub-class of determiners (see below). They occur only attributively and generally, unlike descriptive adjectives, may not be used in conjunction with articles. The set of English determinative adjectives includes 'some, any, much, more', possessives 'my, your' etc. and demonstratives 'this, that', etc.

    The term DETERMINER, on the other hand, denotes members of several different form-classes, that have in common only the fact that they serve to determine either the specific reference or the number/quantity of a given NP (or, to put it more simply, they tell us - not, like a descriptive adjective, what kind of thing it is - but which particular thing it is, or how much there is of it).

    In addition to determinative adjectives, the group includes articles (definite and indefinite) and even possessive-case nouns, such as Peter's in Peter's coat.

    Thus, as you can see, only some adjectives are determiners, and only some determiners are adjectives!
    Last edited by philo2009; 06-Nov-2009 at 06:35.

Similar Threads

  1. [Grammar] Determiners and Adjectives
    By Pedroski in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 26
    Last Post: 08-Apr-2009, 13:20
  2. Gradable and non gradable adjectives
    By zaed_salah in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-May-2008, 08:55
  3. Help me understand why these are predicate adjectives!
    By aimeeteri in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 13-Mar-2008, 22:21
  4. Adjectives doubts
    By Greentree in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-Jul-2006, 09:28
  5. can adjectives take gerunds as postmodifiers?
    By JoestillpuzzledCalifornia in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 06-Nov-2004, 03:36


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts