Adverbs of Manner

Adverbs of manner are used to describe how things happen. They are usually put after the verb.

  • The children are laughing happily.
  • The girl is crying loudly.
  • Liza dresses elegantly.

How to form adverbs of manner

Regular adverbs

Adverbs of manner are usually formed by adding ‘-ly’ to the adjective:

  • careful → You should drive carefully at night.
  • polite → Mary looks sad. Could you ask her politely, what has happened to her?
  • serious → Seriously speaking, I don’t like this idea.

1. If the adjective ends in ‘-le’, remove ‘-e’ and add ‘-y’:

  • gentle → This mechanism should be cleaned very gently.
  • terrible → I will miss you terribly.

2. If the adjective ends in a consonant + ‘-y’, change ‘-y’ to ‘-ily’:

  • angry → She looked at me angrily.
  • easy → Jack can do grammar exercises easily.
  • noisy → Your old printer works noisily, you should change it for a new one.

3. If the adjective ends in ‘-ful’, double the ‘-l’ and add ‘-y’:

  • beautiful → Mary has cooked the meat beautifully.
  • successful → Not all students passed their exams successfully.

Irregular adverbs

Some adverbs of manner are not formed by adding ‘-ly’:

1. ‘Well’ is the adverb of ‘good’. We often use ‘very’ and ‘quite’ with ‘well’:

  • Jane speaks German and French very well.
  • Nick runs long distances quite well.

2. Some adjectives ending in ‘-ly’, like ‘friendly’, ‘lovely’, ‘silly’, ‘ugly’, don’t change to become adverbs.

  • He spoke to me in a friendly manner. (NOT: He spoke to me friendlyly)
  • Her dancing is so lovely. (NOT: She dances so lovelyly).

3. Adverbs of manner, like ‘early’, ‘late’, ‘fast’, ‘hard’, ‘low’, have the same form as their adjectives:

  • The bus is late again (adjective).
  • A am afraid, we’ll arrive late (adv).
  • Tom drives very fast, it’s dangerous.
  • We’re working hard all day long.
Note: An adverb of manner should NOT be put between a verb and an object:
He plays football perfectly.
NOT: He plays perfectly football.

Watch this short video from Top English to learn more about adverbs of degree:

Read more about adverbs:

How to Form Adverbs

Adverbs of Frequency

Adverbs of Place and Movement

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