Overview of Adverbs
What is an Adverb?
Adverb is a word (or group of words) which modifies the meaning of:
- a Verb,
- an Adjective or
- another Adverb.
In fact, it is a qualifying word used to qualify all the parts of speech except Noun / Pronoun / Interjection.
It can qualify a phrase and sentence too.
Let’s see some examples of each.
Modifying function of Adverbs
He runs fast. (runs – verb; fast - adverb)
Bolt runs quickly. (runs – verb; quickly - adverb)
She’s a very beautiful lady. (beautiful – adjective; very - adverb)
She runs very fast. (runs – verb; fast – adverb modifying verb ‘runs’; very – adverb modifying adverb ‘fast’)
An Adverb can also modify other parts of speech.
The drone hovered exactly over his head. (over – preposition; exactly - adverb)
He is dead against this decision. (against – preposition; dead - adverb)
She likes him simply because he is not pretentious. (because – conjunction; simply - adverb)
You can start running only when the referee fires the gun. (when – conjunction; only - adverb)
As we already mentioned, Adverbs can modify phrases and sentences too.
He was dressed all in blue. (in blue – phrase; all - adverb)
He paid his debts down to the last penny. (to the last penny – phrase; down - adverb)
Adverbs standing at the beginning of a sentence sometimes modify the whole sentence, rather than any particular word.
Unfortunately, no one was there to help them. (Unfortunately - adverb)
Come what may, I will go to the concert. (Come what may - adverb)