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Wednesday, August 16, 2017
The Royal Order of Adverbs
We all want to become better writers, so that readers -- instead of being jolted by awkward phrasing -- sense a measure of grace in our lines. One way of doing this is by understanding the most natural way to space adverbs.
As a general rule, it works best to use adverbs of "manner" first in a sentence; and adverbs of "place" next. Followed by adverbs of frequency, time, and purpose.
Here's a sample sentence:
"Abraham swims... slowly... in the pool... every morning... before dawn... to keep in shape."
1. Manner (slowly, in the example above)
2. Place (in the pool)
3. Frequency (every morning)
4. Time (before dawn)
5. Purpose (to keep in shape)
Here is another example (which omits #3):
"The librarian was forced to hush the rowdy students... sternly... in the study alcoves... last night... in order to prevent anarchy."
For further explanation of adverbs, check out this article.