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Adjective

In English language, an adjective, a part of speech, is a "describing word", modifying a noun much like a determiner. Past participle in sentences are often woked as adjective.

In the examples, the adjective is highlighted in bold.

  • It is a cold day.
  • He is a kind man.
  • I like blue sky.

  • The sky is blue.
  • The joke she told was so funny, I could not stop laughing all day.
  • He went mad.

In the first set of examples the adjective simply describes a noun. In the later examples the adjective forms a predicate. Some adjectives in English, such as "my" or "bonkers" can not be used both ways.

In English, adjectives come before the noun they describe. In French, they usually come after the noun.

An adjectival phrase is a phrase with an adjective as its head. (e.g. full of toys) . Adjectival phrases may occur as premodifiers to a noun (a bin full of toys), or as predicatives to a verb. (the bin is full of toys.)

Non-standard adjectives in English Following is a list of English adjectives that are non-standard in that they are not derived from the same root as the corresponding noun, or they are based on the same root but in a way that is non-intuitive even to a native English speaker. In some cases, the non-standard adjective is merely an alternative to a standard one. For example, for an adjective form of 'charity' we could say 'eleemosynary', though in most cases 'charitable' would work just as well. Also some of the adjectives have a similar noun form, which acts as an alternative noun.

Here is the list in the format:

  • noun form - adjective form (alternative noun if present)


  • abdomen - ventral, alvine
  • abdominal cavity - celiac (coelom)
  • accuracy - veracious (veracity) synonym?
  • actors, acting - histrionic
  • adjectives - epithetic
  • aesthetic pleasure - sensuous
  • aging, the aged - geriatric
  • agriculture - georgic, geoponic
  • alcohol - bibulous, vinic
  • alphabet - abecedarian
  • animals - zoological, zoic
  • anklebone - astragatar(sp?) (astragalus)
  • ants - myrmecological, formic
  • apes - simian
  • Aphrodite - cytherean
  • apples - pomaceous, malic
  • aristocracy - genteel
  • Aristotle - peripatetic Is this a joke? No, it's not a joke.
  • arm - brachial
  • armpit - axillary
  • arrangement - tactic
  • arrows - sagittal
  • ashes - cinerary
  • asses - asinine
  • authors - auctorial
  • aviation - aerial

  • back of the head - occipital (occiput)
  • backside - dorsal
  • badgers - meline
  • barbers - tonsorial
  • bathrooms - lavatorial (lavatory)
  • baths, bathing - balneal
  • bats - chiropteran, vespertilian
  • bears - ursine
  • bees - apian
  • beeswax - cerotic
  • bells - tintinnabulary
  • belly - ventral
  • bile - cholic
  • birds - avian, ornithic, volucrine
  • birds of prey - raptorial
  • birth - parturient
  • birthdays - genethliac
  • bishops - episcopal
  • Black Sea - euxine
  • bladder - cystic, vesical
  • blood - sanguineous, hemal, hematal, hematic, hemic
  • bloodshed - sanguineous
  • blood vessels - vascular, hemal, hematal
  • bodily motion - gestic
  • body - somatic, corporal, corporeal, physical
  • body/mind - psychosomatic
  • bones - osteal, osseous, osteoid
  • boundaries - terminal
  • boxing - fistic, pugilistic
  • brain - cerebral, cerebric, encephalic
  • branches - ramal
  • branching patterns - cladistic
  • breastbone - sternal
  • breasts - mammary, mammilary
  • breeding season - nuptial
  • bridges - pontal
  • brothers - fraternal
  • buds - blastous
  • buildings - edificial (edifice)
  • bulls - taurine
  • business - commercial (commerce)
  • butter - butyric
  • buttocks - gluteal

  • cats - feline
  • chin - mental

  • dogs - canine

  • snakes - serpentine


The list, sorted by adjectives:

  • abecedarian - alphabet
  • aerial - aviation
  • asses - asinine
  • astragatar - anklebone
  • alvine - abdomen ( belly )
  • apian - bees
  • auctorial - authors
  • avian - birds
  • axillary - armpit

  • balneal - baths, bathing
  • bibulous: alcohol
  • blastous - buds
  • brachial - arm
  • butyric - butter

  • canine - dogs
  • cerebral - brain
  • cerebric: see cerebral
  • cerotic - beeswax
  • celiac - abdominal cavity
  • chiropteran - bats
  • cholic - bile
  • cinerary - ashes
  • cladistic - branching patterns
  • coloem: see celiac
  • commercial - business
  • corporal - body
  • corporeal: see corporal
  • cystic - bladder
  • cytherean - Aphrodite

  • dorsal - backside

  • edificial - buildings
  • encephalic: see cerebral
  • episcopal - bishops
  • epithetic - adjectives
  • euxine - Black Sea

  • feline - cats
  • fistic - boxing
  • formic - ants
  • fraternal - brothers

  • genethliac - birthdays
  • genteel - aristocracy
  • gestic - bodily motion
  • geoponic - agriculture
  • georgic: see geoponic
  • geriatric - aging, the aged
  • gluteal - buttocks

  • hemal - blood / blood vessels
  • hematal: see hemal (1) & (2)
  • hematic: see hemal
  • hemic: see hemal

  • histrionic - actors, acting

  • lavatorial / lavatory - bathrooms

  • malic - apples
  • mammary / mammilary
  • meline - badgers
  • mental - chin
  • myrmecological: see formic

  • nuptial - breeding season

  • occipital - back of the head ( also called occiput )
  • ornithic: see avian
  • osseous - bones
  • osteal: see osseous
  • osteoid: see osseous

  • parturient - birth
  • peripatetic - Aristotle
  • physical: see corporal
  • pomaceous: see malic
  • pontal - bridges
  • psychosomatic - body / mind
  • pugilistic: see fistic

  • ramal - branches
  • raptorial - birds of prey

  • sagittal - arrows
  • sanguineous: blood/bloodshed
  • sensuous - aesthetic pleasure
  • serpentine - snakes
  • simian - apes
  • somatic: see corporal
  • sternal - breastbone

  • tactic - arrangement
  • taurine - bulls
  • terminal - boundaries
  • tintinnabulary - bells
  • tonsorial - barbers

  • ursine - bears

  • vascular: see hemal (2)
  • ventral: see alvine
  • veracious - accuracy
  • vespertilian: see chiropteran
  • vesical: see cystic
  • vinic: see bibulous
  • volucrine: see avian

  • zoic: animals
  • zoological: see zoic


See also grammar, and non-standard adjectives



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