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English Grammar - Formation of Adverbs

Formation of Adverbs

Adverbs can be formed in a number of ways.

1. Adverbs of manner are mostly formed from Adjectives by adding ly.

clever - cleverly
wise – wisely
kind – kindly
foolish – foolishly
quick- quickly
beautiful – beautifully

2. When the Adjective ends in y preceded by a consonant, change y into i and add ly.

happy – happily
ready – readily
heavy – heavily

3. When the Adjective ends in le, simply change e into y.

single – singly
double – doubly

4. Some Adverbs are made up of a Noun and a qualifying Adjective.

Sometimes, meantime, meanwhile, yesterday, midway, otherwise.

5. Some Adverbs are compounds of on (which is weakened to a) and a Noun.

afoot (=on foot)
abed, asleep, ahead, aboard, away

6. Similarly there are other Adverbs which are also compounds of some Preposition and a Noun.

betimes, besides, today, tomorrow, overboard
(Note: The word be is an old form of the preposition by)

7. Some Adjectives are compounds of a Preposition and an Adjective.

abroad, along, aloud, anew, behind, below, beyond.

8. Some adverbs are compounds of a Preposition and an Adverb.

within, without, before, beneath.

9. There is a class of Adverbs which are derived from the Pronouns the (=that), he, who.

English Grammar - Formation of Adverbs

10. Many of the above Adverbs are compounded with Prepositions. Thus we get –
thereby, therefrom, therein, thereof, thereon, thereto, therewith;
hereafter, hereby, herein, hereupon, herewith;
wherefore, wherein, whereon, whereof;
thenceforth, thenceforward;
henceforth, henceforward.

11. Two adverbs sometimes go together, joined by the Conjunction and.

again and again (= more than once, repeatedly)
by and by (=before long, presently, after a time)
far and near (=in all directions)
far and wide (=comprehensively)
far and away (=by a great deal, decidedly, beyond all comparison)
first and foremost (=first of all)
now and then (=from time to time, occasionally)
now and again (=at intervals, sometimes, occasionally)
off an on (=not regularly, intermittently)
once and again (=on more than one occasion, repeatedly)
out and away (=beyond comparison, by far)
out and out (=decidedly, beyond all comparison)
over and above (=in addition to, besides, as well as)
over and over (=many times, frequently, repeatedly)
through and through (=thoroughly, completely)
thus and thus (=in such and such a way)
to and fro (=backwards and forwards, up and down)

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