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  1. Unregistered
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    #1

    Mixing adjectives and adverbs in a phrase

    In a phrase describing a verb, is there any situation in which it would be correct to mix an adjective and an adverb?

    Eg. "Helping you live safer and more independently"

    or should it be:

    "Helping you live safely and more independently"

    If the latter, would it also be acceptable to write:

    "Helping you live more safely and independently"

    Thank you!


    • Join Date: May 2006
    • Posts: 1,335
    #2

    Re: Mixing adjectives and adverbs in a phrase

    Hi,
    I think only your last version is correct.


    • Join Date: Sep 2005
    • Posts: 260
    #3

    Re: Mixing adjectives and adverbs in a phrase

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
    In a phrase describing a verb, is there any situation in which it would be correct to mix an adjective and an adverb?
    Eg. "Helping you live safer and more independently"
    or should it be:
    "Helping you live safely and more independently"
    If the latter, would it also be acceptable to write:
    "Helping you live more safely and independently"
    Thank you!
    The guide in a situation like this is to split it into two phrases, and the two phrases should both work.

    Like this:-

    "helping you live safer and more independently" bcomes

    "helping you live safer"
    "helping you live independently"

    that sentence doesn't work.


    "helping you live safely and more independently" becomes

    "helping you live safely"
    "helping you live more independantly"

    that sentence does work.

    Regarding your question generally, if there is only a verb to refer to then the
    phrase will contain only adverbs. You can't put an adjective in there with nothing to describe...


    • Join Date: Feb 2007
    • Posts: 52
    #4

    Re: Mixing adjectives and adverbs in a phrase

    Nine for zero!!

    I would adhere, in this case, to the principle of parallelism: native speakers say, ‘I like to sing and (to) dance,’ not ‘I like singing and to dance.’ In this case, you could say, ‘Helping you live in a safer and a more independent way’ (in which case ‘safer’ and ‘more independent’ are adjectives qualifying ‘way’), or ‘Helping you live safely and independently’ (in which case ‘safely’ and ‘independently’ are both adverbs qualifying ‘live’).

    Traditionalists (and I) would teach you: ‘big, bigger, biggest/beautiful, more beautiful, most beautiful,’ and say that ‘more safely’ is simply a mistake – something is safe or it is not, in the same way that something is unique or not. However, the praxis is clearly changing. I now commonly hear native speakers say things like ‘I will buy a more bigger one’ or ‘We can live more safely.’

    Finally, consider the notion that ‘Helping you live safer’ is a contracted form of ‘Helping you live (in a) safer (way),’ a structure that is not uncommon.


    • Join Date: Sep 2005
    • Posts: 260
    #5

    Re: Mixing adjectives and adverbs in a phrase

    Quote Originally Posted by mark in perth View Post
    Nine for zero!!

    I would adhere, in this case, to the principle of parallelism: native speakers say, ‘I like to sing and (to) dance,’ not ‘I like singing and to dance.’ In this case, you could say, ‘Helping you live in a safer and a more independent way’ (in which case ‘safer’ and ‘more independent’ are adjectives qualifying ‘way’), or ‘Helping you live safely and independently’ (in which case ‘safely’ and ‘independently’ are both adverbs qualifying ‘live’).

    Traditionalists (and I) would teach you: ‘big, bigger, biggest/beautiful, more beautiful, most beautiful,’ and say that ‘more safely’ is simply a mistake – something is safe or it is not, in the same way that something is unique or not. However, the praxis is clearly changing. I now commonly hear native speakers say things like ‘I will buy a more bigger one’ or ‘We can live more safely.’

    Finally, consider the notion that ‘Helping you live safer’ is a contracted form of ‘Helping you live (in a) safer (way),’ a structure that is not uncommon.
    I hardly ever hear native speakers saying "more bigger"...

    The argument about 'safe' as ungradeable is an old one! I vaguely remember it from my school days. The argument was that safe is absolute, and we should grade by degrees of danger. The use of 'safer' was blamed on advertisers who didn't want their product associated with the word 'danger'.

    The counter argument is that less dangerous and more safe are the same concept, so if dangerous can be graded why can't safe?


    • Join Date: May 2006
    • Posts: 1,335
    #6

    Re: Mixing adjectives and adverbs in a phrase

    A bit off,
    Mark, I once asked you what your favourite expression -number for number - meant. Got no reply. This is a second time.
    Thanks

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