Lesson 66: POSITION OF ADVERBS

Some adverbs can go at the beginning of the sentence:

(Sometimes we go swimming) and in the middle (We sometimes go swimming) and at the end (We go swimming sometimes).

But many adverbs cannot go in all of these positions.

1

If an adverb describes an adjective or another adverb, it goes before it:
nearly correct
always late
very carefully

BUT the adverb enough (Lesson 67) goes after it:
correct enough
early enough
carefully enough

2

The adverbs early, late, a little, a lot, well and yet go at the end of the basic sentence (Lesson 7):
We arrived early.
I like cheese a lot.

NOT like a lot cheese

3

If the basic sentence is subject and verb only (Lesson 62), adverbs showing how (Lesson 80) go at the end:
He works hard.
She ate slowly.

NOT slowly ate

4

The adverbs almost, also, hardly, just, nearly, never and still go in the middle of the sentence:

before the lexical verb (Lesson 3)
We nearly missed the train.

but after the first auxiliary
I have never missed it.
I am still learning.

and after the verb be
I am also a teacher.

NOTICE: Except for the verb be, adverbs cannot go between the verb and another part of the basic sentence (NOT we go sometimes swimming).

5

The rules for the position of adverbs are difficult. If you are not sure where to put an adverb, put it at the end of the basic sentence (most adverbs can go here).

NOTICE: Different adverb positions sometimes give different meanings to sentences (Lesson 67).


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