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Many adverbial modifiers cannot be clearly assigned to a syntactic category. However, Adjective Phrases (APs) can be used as adverbial modifiers to all other syntactic categories. Most adjectives can be used in an adverbial construction of modification.


Most adverbs are not marked by special morphology, although some may be, such as evaluative adverbs and time adverbs. Many adverbs clearly derive from adjectives, but, then again, many others, such as time adverbs seem nominal rather than adjectival. There is no morphological marker by which all adverbs or even many adverbs may be recognised, though there are markers targeting specific subgroups of adverbs. Some time adverbs may be marked with the suffixes -en, -e and -s, as we will see. There are a number of morphological suffixes which may be adjoined to adjectives so as to derive adverbs. The suffix -wei away is particularly productive in Frisian, also causing a meaning shift. Other suffixes which are used in this way include:

  • the plural diminutive suffix
  • the suffix -erwize way
  • the suffix -gewiis manner
Adjectives which are used as adverbs all share the property that they may not be accompanied by complements. An example is given below, set off against a predicative construction:

a. Predicative
Rimmer wie lilk op Geart
Rimmer was angry at Geart
Rimmer was angry at Geart
b. Adverbial
Rimmer praat sa lilk
Rimmer talks so angrily
Rimmer talks so angrily
*Rimmer praat sa lilk op Geart
Rimmer talks so angry at Geart
Rimmer talks so angrily to Geart
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