Unit 1.2

Adjectives used only in Attributive Position


Adjectives are determiners that can be placed in two different positions within a sentence to modify or describe a person or a thing.

Some adjectives are only used in the attributive position.


Attributive Adjectives are adjectives that appear only before nouns.

The most common attributive adjectives are: elder, little, live, main, mere…


  • His elder brother cancelled his wedding.
    (NOT: His brother who is elder than him cancelled he wedding.)
  • They have a little calendar.
    (NOT: Their calendar is little.)
  • We sell live seafood in the market every day.
    (NOT: The seafood we sell in the market every day are live.)
  • This is the main problem at the moment.
    (NOT:This problem is the main.)
  • He had a mere headache last night.
    (NOT: The headache he had yesterday was mere.)


We use some adjectives only in attributive position to modify or describe a person or a thing.


When an adjective is placed before a noun, it is called an attributive adjective.

The most commonly used are: elder, little, live, mainmere.

For example:
— “Their elder daughter got married.” / “Their daughter is elder than mine.”= Elder can only be used as an attributive adjective.
— “She has a little bed.”/ “Her bed is little.” = Little can only be used as an attributive adjective.

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


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