He often comes because she sings beautifully

One of the topics in English I still have problems with, is the place of adverbs in the sentence. More specifically, does the adverb go before or after the verb?

She sings beautifully, or: she beautifully sings?

He comes often, or: he often comes?

Let 's limit ourselves here to adverbs  of manner and adverbs of frequency.

adverbs of manner: f.e. bravely, fast, happily,  hard, quickly, well

Adverbs of manner usualy come after the verb of after the object if there is any:

she dances beautifully (she beautifully dances)

He fought bravely. (he bravely fought)

She speaks German fluently. (she fluently speaks German)

He gave her the money reluctantly (he reluctantly gave her the money)

This is my most common error when using adverbs in English: putting the adverb of manner before the verb. This is correct in case of adverbs of frequency (see below), but I concluded incorrectly that putting adverbs before the verb is a general rule.

However, the grammatical rules in English are very elastic. As we 've seen, the adverb (of manner) comes ofter the verb or object. However, when we have verb + long object, the adverb is usually put before the verb:

She carefully picked up al the pieces of broken glass. <=> She picked them up carefully.

He angrily denied that he had stolen the documents <=> He denied the accusation angrily.


Adverbs of frequency: always, never, frequently, often, once, sometimes, usually (+ also, probably), (+ all, both)...

These adverbs go with the verb in the middle of the sentence

1) if the verb is one word, the adverb goes before the verb

Helen always drives to work. (Helen drives always to work)

He often reads books. (he reads books often)

She once saw the Queen. (she saw the Queen once)

2) but adverbs go after am/is/are/was/were

He is usually late at work. (he usually is late at work)

She is always angry when the children are noisy. (She always is angry...)

You are never generous. (you never are generous)

3) if the verb is one or more verbs, the adverb usually goes after the first verb

I can never remember her name. (I never can remember,)

The concert will probably be cancelled (but: I probably won 't see you)

Clare doesn 't often eat meat (Claire doesn 't eat meat often)

4) all and both follow the same rules

We all felt ill after the meal. (We felt all ill)

My parents are both teachers (my parents both are teachers, and: my parents are teachers both)

Sarea and Jane have both applied for the job (They both have applied, and: they have applied both)

We are all going out this evening (we all are going out, and: we are going all out)

5) also follows the same rules

Jane also works late (Jane works late also)

I am also a vegetarian. (I also am a vegetarian)

She has also been living in Manchester. (She also has been living, and: she has been living also)


These are a couple of rules concering the place of the adverb in the English sentence. Of course, there are other cases, but let it suffice for today. 

12:32 Gepost door Johnsatyricon | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Print |  Facebook | |

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