Adjective order

Status
Not open for further replies.

lbski14

New member
Joined
May 19, 2010
Member Type
English Teacher
I realize that there is a rule for adjective order, but I came across a tricky question.

Why do we say beautiful old-fashioned wood floors instead of old-fashioned beautiful wood floors

Is old-fashioned considered age or opinion? If it's age, that makes sense because age goes after opinion.

If old-fashioned is considered opinion also, then I heard we are supposed to just choose which one goes first according to what sounds good.

How am I supposed to teach my students what sounds good if this is the case?

Someone help!
 

corum

Banned
Joined
Feb 8, 2010
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Hungarian
Home Country
Hungary
Current Location
Hungary
An old-fashioned something is not necessarily old. An old-fashioned, say, glass-fronted cabinet that was built last week is not old. Its distinctive mode of construction can be said to be not modern, i.e. showing features that were designed a long time ago. Old-fashioned is an opinion.

http://web2.uvcs.uvic.ca/elc/studyzone/410/grammar/adjord.htm

beautiful old-fashioned wood floors :tick:
old-fashioned beautiful wood floors :cross:

Try to find the answer in the dactyls and anapests, in prosody, in the system of metrics in which I am hopelessly incompetent.

ladies and getlemen :tick:
gentlemen and ladies :cross:

The reason is one of prosody.
 

2006

Banned
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
I realize that there is a rule for adjective order, but I came across a tricky question.

Why do we say beautiful old-fashioned wood floors instead of old-fashioned beautiful wood floors

Is old-fashioned considered age or opinion? To me it's style, wherever that fits in. If it's age, that makes sense because age goes after opinion.

If old-fashioned is considered opinion also, then I heard we are supposed to just choose which one goes first according to what sounds good.
I think "sounds good" is the key.
How am I supposed to teach my students what sounds good if this is the case? I think the most important word is "beautiful", so I would say it first. "beautiful" is also unlike "old fashioned" and "wood", so it would sound odd between the other two adjectives.

Someone help!
2006
 
Last edited:

bds51

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2010
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Germany
Hello Ibski14,
Your feeling is right; beautiful is your opinion and old-fashioned is 'style' and opinion always goes before style. And even if old-fashioned were 'age' ,opinion still goes before age and age goes before style.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top