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  1. #1
    gurpreetgill4u is offline Member
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    How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    Hello,

    I'd really appreciate if it if someone could help me understand why "unlikely" is an adjective, not an adverb in the following phrase:

    a) I find this very unlikely.

    Thanks for your support

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Re: How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    It's an adjective in the same way that "likely" is an adjective if it were used in the same sentence, or in the same way that "happy" is an adjective in "I find him
    to be very happy".

    Are you confused by the fact that it ends "-ly"? That's a common source of confusion but you have to remember that not all words that end -ly are adverbs. There is no natural adverbial form of "unlikely". We have been asked many times if it's "unlikelily" but that word doesn't exist.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 13-Sep-2017 at 20:35. Reason: Fixed typo
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. #3
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    I'd spell that unlikely word unlikelily if it existed.
    I am not a teacher.

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Re: How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    I'd spell that unlikely word unlikelily if it existed.
    That's actually what I thought I'd typed! I've changed the spelling in post #2.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    Quote Originally Posted by gurpreetgill4u View Post
    I'd really appreciate if it if someone could help me understand why "unlikely" is an adjective, not an adverb in the following phrase:

    a) I find this very unlikely.
    Which of the following would you use if the movie made you laugh?

    I found the movie very funny.
    I found the movie very funnily.

  6. #6
    gurpreetgill4u is offline Member
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    Re: How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    I found the movie very funny.

  7. #7
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: How "unlikely" is an adjective not an adverb

    Then the word that fills that slot grammatically is an adjective. There are some adjectives that end in -ly. Likely is an adjective in your original sentence. There are other adjectives that end in -ly, like friendly (a friendly person) and leisurely (in a leisurely manner).

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