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The Noun Phrase. Premodification: determiners, adjectives & nouns. DETERMINERS. Articles : the , a(n) Demonstratives : this, these, that, those Possessives : pronouns (my her, your, etc), by adding ‘s (John’s car) Quantifiers :

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the noun phrase

The Noun Phrase

Premodification: determiners, adjectives & nouns

  • Articles: the , a(n)
  • Demonstratives : this, these, that, those
  • Possessives: pronouns (my her, your, etc), by adding ‘s (John’s car)
  • Quantifiers:
  • Definite quantifiers - they give an exact idea of how many or what portion you are talking about: both, half, all, either, each and every
  • Indefinite quantifiers – they are an inexact expression for quantities: ( U & C) any, some, a lot of, lots of, (only C) a couple of, a few, several, many, (only U) a little, a great deal of
  • Negative quantifiers: no, neither, few, little
  • Nouns - they are often used to classify or describe other nouns, and then they are put in the premodifier position:

e.g. A computer operator course; a job placement test; a three-room apartment

  • Adjectives – You can, in theory, use any number of premodifiers in a noun phrase, although it is unusual to use more than two.
  • The rules governing the order of premodifiers are complicated and subtle. In general, you can think of two basic premodifier positions: thedescribers and the classifiers.
the describers
The describers

They simply describe the noun. They can be made comparative and can be used with a qualifier. They are a large group that is further divided:

  • Evaluative adjectives: express the speaker’s or writer’s opinion or feeling about whatever is being described. When more than one describer is used, the evaluative one is put first. (e.g.lovely, handsome, temperamental, etc.)
  • Adjectives that describe size, length or height come next. (e.g. big, small, long, short, tall.)
  • Adjectives that describe other qualities follow (, cold, clean, fresh, stupid, smart, sad, etc..)
  • Adjectives that describe color come last.
the classifiers
The classifiers

They can be either adjectives or nouns. They classify the noun head in terms of:

  • Frequency: e.g. annual, monthly, weekly, daily
  • Participle adjectives: e.g. broken, homemade, bored, stolen, chosen, etc.
  • Nationality or region: e.g. African, Chinese, Spanish, western
  • Area of activity or study: e.g. educational, medical, political, social