Glossary of Linguistic Terms



An adjective is a word that belongs to a class whose members modify nouns. An adjective specifies the properties or attributes of a noun referent.


Some languages have no formally distinct category of adjectives. In such languages, property concepts are expressed as either nouns or verbs.

An adjective generally:

  • occurs in a noun phrase or as a stative predicate
  • may be intensified, and
  • may take comparative and superlative degrees.


  • That cat is big.
  • We will not drive the old car.
  • I am very encouraged!
  • She is more agile than you.