Adverbs List and Examples: Words that Describe Verbs

adverbs list - adverbs examples
Last Updated: May 23, 2018

What is an Adverb?

While adjectives describe nouns, adverbs describe verbs.

The 5 types of adverbs help explain ‘how’, ‘when’ or ‘where’ an action takes place. And adverbs often end with -ly but they don’t have to.

These adverb examples uses the verb ‘searched’.

  • He quickly searched for his shoes. (Adverb of manner describes verb)
  • He searched everywhere but couldn’t find it. (Adverb of place for “where”)
  • Yesterday, he searched for his shoes. (Adverb of time for “when”)

Adverbs that add -ly at the end

In some cases, you can take an adjective and simply add -ly to form an adverb.

ADJECTIVE EXAMPLES:
  • The cat is quick

Instead of describing a noun, an adverb describes or modifies a verb. In this case, the noun is the word ‘cat’. Because adverbs describe verbs, you need to add a verb in the sentence. Adverbs of manner tell us the way or how to do something.

ADVERB EXAMPLES:
  • The cat runs quickly (adverb)
  • She plays the violin terribly (adverb)

In this case, ‘quicky’ describes the speed at which the cat is running. But not all words ending with -ly is an adverb. For example, the word friendly below describes his grandparents personality and is an adjective.

ADJECTIVE EXAMPLES:
  • He visited her friendly grandparents.

Adverbs that don’t end with -ly

However, not all adverbs end with -ly. For example, the words ‘fast’ and ‘well’ describe verbs but do not end in -ly.

IRREGULAR ADVERBS:
  • The horse moved fast.
  • She plays the piano well.

Other adverbs examples can modify adjectives but not the other way around. In other words, adverbs can combine with other adverbs to put more emphasis on the verb. For example, when you use ‘more’, ‘most’ and ‘least’, they can show degree when describing a been.

ADVERB OF DEGREE EXAMPLES:
  • The music is extremely loud.
  • He runs very quickly.
  • When he wears his running shoes, he moves more quickly.

Adverbs Examples

In most cases for descriptive adverbs (adverbs of manner), you can take an adjective and simply add -ly to form an adverb. In general, adverbs of manner tell us the way or how to do something.

We cannot produce an exhaustive adverbs list because there are thousands of possibilities. But here are some of the most common adverbs examples in the English language.

Adverbs ending with -ly
  • Easily
  • Rapidly
  • Loudly
  • Playfully
  • Gradually
  • Correctly
  • Clearly
  • Enthusiastically
  • Carefully
  • Silently
  • Happily
  • Rarely
  • Safely
  • Quietly
  • Terribly

However, not all adverbs end with -ly. For example, the words ‘fast’ and ‘well’ describe verbs but do not end in -ly. Finally, here are some adverbs that don’t with -ly.

Adverbs not ending with -ly
  • Fast
  • Hard
  • Well
  • High

READ MORE: All 12 Verb Tenses in English – Past, Present and Future Verb Conjugation

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