Attributive Adjectives

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Tdol

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What attributive adjectives are there in English? I was asked this in class the other day and the only one I could think of off-hand was 'elder' What others are there? I'd like to be able to rattle off a few if asked again. ;-)
 

MikeNewYork

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tdol said:
What attributive adjectives are there in English? I was asked this in class the other day and the only one I could think of off-hand was 'elder' What others are there? I'd like to be able to rattle off a few if asked again. ;-)

Because of the way you asked the question, can I assume that you mean adjectives that are only attributive?

If so, there are very few, in my opinion. Still, if you will accept some that attributive in at least one, but not all senses, there are some.

Almost all nouns that are used as adjectives are attributive only. Now, I know that a noun is a nioun, but some have transitioned into more than one part of speech. "Jazz" is an example. It is a legitimate adjective and it can't be used as a predicate adjective. Other noun-adjectives such as football in football helmet, etc. could be used as well.

The adjective "sheer" in the sense of "pure" is only attributive. Some senses of "plain" are attributive. Numbers, as adjectives, are almost always attributive if not always. Present participles/gerunds used as adjectives would be confused with progressive verbs if used in the predicate.

Are these of any help?
 

Tdol

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Are there any other utterly straight ones like 'elder'? There what I'm looking for. Good points, though, and thanks.

I'd just like to be able to trot a few out to pretend I know what I'm talking about. ;-)
 

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tdol said:
Are there any other utterly straight ones like 'elder'? There what I'm looking for. Good points, though, and thanks.

I'd just like to be able to trot a few out to pretend I know what I'm talking about. ;-)

How about principal, chief, main, cardinal?
 

Tdol

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Trust the Pope to think of 'cardinal'. Thanks a million. ;-) ;-)
 

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tdol said:
Trust the Pope to think of 'cardinal'. Thanks a million. ;-) ;-)

I'll keep trying. There may be more. :roll:
 

Tdol

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It's a surprisingly small group, though. ;-)
 
I

infinikyte

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Try....

eldest 8)

live (referring to "not dead")

old (referring to relationship)

little (as opposed to "small" in the predicate)

bloody (referring to degree of something)

mere

.... and a whole bunch of intensifiers

Check out Practical English Usage by M Swan, p.9
 
B

Bartosz Cierach

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tdol said:
What attributive adjectives are there in English? I was asked this in class the other day and the only one I could think of off-hand was 'elder' What others are there? I'd like to be able to rattle off a few if asked again. ;-)

There are many adjectives that are used in attributive position only, for example: criminal lawyer is not the same as the lawyer is criminal, presidential palace, etc.
 

Tdol

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What he did was criminal.

These can be used in either position. ;-)
 
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