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    #1

    Exclamation Adverb vs Adjective prepositional phrases in everyday speech.

    Hi,
    I am working on learning the specifics of grammar and I have come to prepositional phrases. It is here in which I have hit trouble. Specifically the differences between adverb and adjective prepositional phrases.

    Below is an example of what concerns me.
    Say, in the sentence: "I gave each of my friends a blue pencil for Christmas."

    I understand that the direct object is "blue pencil" and "for Christmas" is a prepositional phrase, but what type?
    Is it functioning as an adjective or adverb? I believe that it is functioning as an adjective because it is corresponding to the noun pencil.

    Also while talking with friends, if I said: "We are such good pals at work".
    I understand that "such good pals" is a complement, but what type of prepositional phrase is indicated here? "at work"

    I think it is functioning as an adverb in this situation, not 100% sure of this idea.

    Thank you guys for reading and taking your time.
    Any help is much appreciated.
    Thanks again,
    Sara B.

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Adverb vs Adjective prepositional phrases in everyday speech.

    Quote Originally Posted by sarab123 View Post
    Hi,
    I am working on learning the specifics of grammar and I have come to prepositional phrases. It is here in which I have hit trouble. Specifically the differences between adverb and adjective prepositional phrases.

    Below is an example of what concerns me.
    Say, in the sentence: "I gave each of my friends a blue pencil for Christmas."

    I understand that the direct object is "blue pencil" and "for Christmas" is a prepositional phrase, but what type?
    Is it functioning as an adjective or adverb? I believe that it is functioning as an adjective because it is corresponding to the noun pencil.

    Also while talking with friends, if I said: "We are such good pals at work".
    I understand that "such good pals" is a complement, but what type of prepositional phrase is indicated here? "at work"

    I think it is functioning as an adverb in this situation, not 100% sure of this idea.

    Thank you guys for reading and taking your time.
    Any help is much appreciated.
    Thanks again,
    Sara B.
    When one is trying to determine whether a modifier is an adjective or adverb, it is very useful to determine which question the modifier answers.

    In general, an adjective modifies a noun or pronoun and answers: how many, what kind, which one.
    Adverbs modify verbs, adjectives, or other adverbs and answer: where, when, how, why.

    To determine that, it is often helpful to isolate the words under consideration. For example, In your first sentence the prepositional phrase is "for Christmas". What question does it answer? Is it "gave for Christmas" or "pencil for Christmas"? For the verb (gave), it answers why". For the noun (pencil), it does not seem to answer anything. Therefore, one could conclude that the phrase is acting as an adverb.

    In your second example, what question does "at work" answer? Is it "are at work" or "pals at work"? One could argue that the phrase answers "where" for "are" or "what kind" for pals. In this case, both have merit, but I would tend to go with the adverbial "where". Sometimes, the distinction is not completely clear.

    see more here: Purdue OWL: Adjective or Adverb
    Last edited by MikeNewYork; 28-Jul-2013 at 23:54.

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