What is an adverb?

An adverb is a word that modifies a verb, adjective, or other adverb.

Some adverbs help to show the manner or way that something is done.  Other adverbs may express or help to express time or place or frequency.

Adverbs are useful words in that they tell us more about the action in the sentence.  Many adverbs are similar to adjectives, however adjectives modify only nouns (and pronouns).

What is the difference between an adjective and an adverb?

An adjective is a word that describes a noun or pronoun.  Adjectives can appear before nouns and as subject complements.  Occasionally adjectives appear behind pronouns.

Adjectives describing nouns

  1. The patient boy waited.   
    (adjective before noun)
  2. The dog is playful.
    (adjective as subject complement)
  3. Someone thoughtful left me the flowers.
    (adjective after pronoun)
  4. The quick fox won the race.
    (the adjective describes the noun fox)
  5. The loud guitar is hurting my ears.
    (the adjective describes the noun guitar)
  6. David is a frequent guest.
    (the adjective describes the noun guest)

Adverbs do not describe nouns or pronouns.  Instead, adverbs give specific details related to the action of the verb.  Details may include information about time, place, frequency and degree.

Adverbs modifying verb

  1. The boy waited patiently.
    (the adverb expresses how the boy waited)
  2. The dog rolled playfully on the floor.
    (the adverb expresses how the dog rolled)
  3. Someone thoughtfully left me the flowers.
    (the adverb expresses how the flowers were left)
  4. The fox ran quickly.
    (the adverb expresses how the fox ran)
  5. John plays the guitar loudly.
    (the adverb expresses how John plays)
  6. David frequently visits our home.
    (the adverb expresses how often David visits)

What is an adverb of manner?

In English an adverb of manner is an adverb that describes how or the manner in which the action of the verb is completed.  Many adverbs of manner are formed by adding -ly to an adjective.

Adverbs of Manner (bold)

angry/angrily,  careful/carefully,  glad/gladly, honest/honestly , kind/kindly, nervous/nervously, powerful/powerfully

quiet/quietly, real/really, sad/sadly, successful/successfully, tender/tenderly, truthful/truthfully, violent/violently

weak/weakly, wise/wisely

Questions and Answers with Adverbs of Manner


  1.  How did he speak to you?
  2.  How did John drive?
  3.  How did I play?
  4.  How did she save the money?
  5.  How did she cheer?
  6.  How did the children wait?
  7.  How did she pet the dog?
  8.  How did he tell the story?


  1.  He spoke angrily to me.
  2.  John drove carefully.
  3.  You played quietly.
  4.  She saved wisely.
  5.  She cheered loudly.
  6.  The children waited patiently.
  7.  She petted the dog gently.
  8.  He told the story truthfully.

What is an adverb of time?

In English an adverb of time is an adverb that specifically describes or helps to describe when the action of a verb was or will be completed.  Definite adverbs of time express specific points in time.  Indefinite adverbs of time express time by relating it to the present or to another clearly defined time.  Time adverbs are usually placed at the end of the sentence, but not always.

Adverbs of Time (Definite)

now,  then,  yesterday,  today,  tonight,  tomorrow

Adverbs of Time (Indefinite)

later,  late,  early,  soon,  eventually,  recently,  yet,  already 

Questions and Answers with Adverbs of Time


  1.  When should we eat lunch?
  2. What about my computer?
  3.  Did Stewart leave today?
  4.  When will he arrive?
  5.  When is your performance?
  6.  Has Alice visited?

Answers – Definite Adverbs

  1.  Let’s eat now.
  2.  I’ll fix it and then it will work.
  3. No, he left yesterday.
  4. He will arrive today.
  5.  We have it tonight.
  6.  No she will come tomorrow.

Answers – Indefinite Adverbs

  1.  Let’s eat later
  2. Don’t worry, I’ll fix it soon.
  3. Yes, he left early.
  4.  He’ll arrive eventually.
  5. We had it already.
  6. No, she hasn’t visited yet.

What is an adverb of place?

In English an adverb of place is an adverb that specifically describes or helps to describe where the action of a verb takes place.  When these words of place are followed by nouns they are prepositions.  When these words of place are not followed by a noun, they are commonly adverbs.

Adverbs of Place

about,  above,  abroad,  anywhere,  away,  back,  backwards,  behind,  below,  down,  downstairs,  east,  elsewhere,  far,  here,  in,  indoors,  inside,  near,  nearby,  off,  on,  out,  outside,  over,  there,  towards,  under,  up,  upstairs,  where  

Questions and Answers with Adverbs of Place


  1.  Where did he go?
  2.  Is anyone home?
  3.  What should we do?
  4.  What are you doing down there?
  5.  Where do these glasses go?


  1.  He went downstairs.
  2.  Yes, please come in!
  3.  Let’s take a walk outside.
  4.  I’m taking out the boxes.
  5. Put them anywhere up there.

What is an adverb of frequency?

In English an adverb of frequency is an adverb that tells how often  (how many times) the action of a verb takes place.  Like adverbs of time, adverbs of frequency can be both definite and indefinite.

Adverbs of Frequency (Definite)

once,  twice,  hourly,  daily,  weekly,  monthly,  annually

Adverbs of Frequency (Indefinite)

always,  never,  usually,  rarely,  often,  frequently,  constantly

Questions and Answers with Adverbs of Frequency

Definite adverbs of frequency are commonly placed at the end of the sentence. Indefinite adverbs of frequency usually appear before the main verb.


  1.  How often did you eat there?
  2.  How often does Jane swim?
  3. How often does the team practice?
  4. How often are reviews completed?

Answers – Definite Adverbs

  1.  I ate there once.
  2.  Jane swims daily.
  3.  The team practices weekly.
  4.  Reviews are completed annually.

Answers – Indefinite Adverbs

  1.  I never ate there.
  2.  Janes swims frequently.
  3. The team usually practices every day.
  4. Reviews are completed rarely.

What is an adverb of degree?

In English an adverb of degree is an adverb that tells how much or the extent (amount) of the action of a verb.  Adverbs of degree tell whether the action of the verb is strong or weak.  Adverbs of degree can be placed before the main verb or at the end of the sentence.

Adverbs of Degree

almost,  absolutely,  barely,  completely,  enough, entirely,  extremely,  fairly,  fully,  greatly,  hardly,  highly,  how,  intensely,  just,  perfectly,  purely,  quite,  rather,  really,  simply,  so,  somewhat,  strongly,  thoroughly,  too,  very,  well

Questions and Answers with Adverbs of Degree


  1.  Do you want to go to the amusement park?
  2. Did your team with the game?
  3. Why did your team lose the game?
  4. Did you sleep well last night?
  5. Was the food tasty?
  6. Do you need to get gas?


  1.  We absolutely want to go to the amusement park.
  2.  We almost won the game.
  3.  We quite simply didn’t play as a team.
  4.  No, I barely slept last night.
  5.  Yes, I think I ate too much.
  6.  No, I think we have enough.

What are good examples of adverbs in sentences?

  More Examples of Adverbs in Sentences

  • He passed the final exam successfully.  |  manner
  • She wisely decided to leave early.  |  manner/time
  • The package could possibly arrive tomorrow.  |   degree/time
  • Put them anywhere.  |  place
  • John usually sleep upstairs.  |  frequency/place
  • My car started twice and then, sadly, it died.  |  frequency/time/manner
  • My interview went well.  |  degree

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