Tag Archives: adverbs

Hyphens with adverbs

By Mary Morel

The rules around using hyphens with adverbs are not clear cut.

No hyphen with y and ly adverbs

The basic rule is that a descriptive phrase consisting of an adverb ending in y or ly and an adjective are not hyphenated.

The rationale is that the adverb is modifying the adjective, rather than the two words acting as a single unit.

a very good meal
rapidly declining dollar
gently rocking cradle
highly likely outcome
easily defeated vote

It is common to see other adverbs hyphenated.

well-known scientist

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Squinting adverbial modifiers: what are they and how do you fix them?

By Mary Morel Squinting adverbial modifiers is a phrase that makes me wonder who invented grammar terms – I find it hard to imagine an adverb squinting! Adverbs are words that add information to parts of a sentence about time, manner, place or degree (soon, softly, here, deeply). They often end in y or ly (very, abruptly). SquintingContinue Reading

Adverbs: position of adverbs in a sentence

By Mary Morel We often have difficulty deciding where to put adverbs as many of them can appear in different places depending on what emphasis we want. I came across this example in a grammar guide of how adverbs can go walkabout. Originally, the book must have been bought in the shop. The book originally must have beenContinue Reading


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