Intensifiers & Mitigators


Adverbs are expressions that function as modifiers of other elements of the clause. They can provide a wide range of information. In some cases, we need them to emphasize words and expressions or to make the emphasis not as strong.

We usually use Intensifiers for the first purpose and Mitigators for the second one.

Below there is a list of the most common Intensifiers and Mitigators.


  • Really;
  • Absolutely;
  • Very;
  • Extremely;
  • Incredibly;
  • Particularly.


  • Quite;
  • Fairly;
  • Pretty (informal);
  • Rather.


  • The climate was really dry.
  • It is absolutely impossible to win at most carnival games.
  • He was very helpful.
  • The view is extremely beautiful.
  • We came incredibly close to falling of the stairs.
  • These drawings are particularly good.


  • The view was quite good, but not breathtaking.
  • These crystals are fairly bright.
  • It is pretty expensive, but I’m still going to buy it.
  • I’m rather bored.

Intensifiers are used when we want to make words and expressions stronger.

Mitigators are used when we want to make words and expressions weaker.

Please note that when quite is used with strong adjectives it is considered as an intensifier.

Adverbs are important as they modify other elements in a sentence. We use adverbs called Intensifiers to emphasise words or expressions and adverbs called Mitigators to make the emphasis on these words and expressions not as strong.

The most common Intensifiers are: Really, absolutely, very, extremely, incredibly and particularly.
The most common Mitigators are: Fairly, rather, quite and pretty.

For example:
— “I am fairly sure that he is lying.” = Weak.
— “I am absolutely sure he is lying.” = Strong.

Let’s revise this content within the [Form] section. Take a look at the [Example] section that shows its use within a context.