Grammar: Using adjectives correctly   42 sounds in the English language
There are forty-two elementary sounds in the English language. These are divided into vocals, sub-vocals, and aspirates.

Using adjectives correctly

From A New English Grammar for Schools, by Thomas Harvey:

Use the following reminders to help you use adjectives correctly. 

I. Use “a” before sub-vocals and aspirates (consonant sounds), and “an” before vocals (vowel sounds).

Choose the correct article in the parentheses: —
1. (A, An) hundred cents make one dollar.
2. Mr. Perry is (a, an) humorous person.
3. She is (a, an) heroine.
4. We traveled through (a, an) open country.
5. We are now (a, an) united people.

II. Use “an” before h when the following syllable is accented.

Choose the correct article in the parentheses: —
1. That is (a, an) historical fact.
2. LSD is (a, an) hallucinatory drug.
3. I would like (a, an) hamburger for lunch.
4. (A, An) hansom is a low-hung, two-wheeled, covered vehicle drawn by one horse.
5. I took my watch to (a, an) horologist for cleaning.

III. Omit the article before a word used as a title or as a name.

Write, inserting “a” correctly:
1. — rascal formerly meant — servant.
2. He is — better mechanic than — sailor.
3. They gave him the title of — duke.
4. We shall vote for Mr. Webster for — senator.
5. What kind of — man is he?

IV. Observe that “the” denotes a particular one, or is used to distinguish one class or species from another, and that “a” denotes one, but not a particular one.

Write, inserting “a/an” or “the” correctly:
1. — dime is — tenth part of — dollar.
2. — eagle is — bird of prey.
3. — telephone is — modern invention.
4. — subject of his lecture was — steam engine.
5. — lion is — king of beasts.
6. — horse which you saw belongs to me.

V. Do not use “them” for “those,” “this here” for “this,” or “that ‘ere” for “that.”

Write, inserting a definite adjective correctly: —
1. He bought ten of — horses.
2. I do not like — weather.
3. What have you done with — umbrella?
4. Did you put — books on — table?
5. I wish you would write — rules on the whiteboard.

VI. Usually place ordinal adjectives before cardinals.

Choose the correct adjectives in the parentheses:
1. Sing the (two first, first two) and the (three last, last three) verses.
2. I built the (first five, five first) houses on that street.
4. You may have cherries from the (first two, two first) trees in the (three first, first three) rows.

VII. Do not use adverbs as adjectives.

Choose the correct adjective in the parentheses:
1. We have arrived (safely, safe).
2. I feel (bad, badly) this morning.
3. The country looks (beautifully, beautiful) in June.
4. Things now look more (favorably, favorable).
5. This rose smells (sweet, sweetly).
6. The relative pronoun should be placed as (nearly, near) as possible to its antecedent.
7. How are you? (Nicely, well), thank you.
8. The wind blew (cold, coldly) over our home.
9. My father looked (gravely, grave) when he heard the news.
10. My eyelids felt (heavy, heavily) for sleep.
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