Is Adjective A Subject: 7 Interesting Facts


In this article we will be addressing the question ‘is adjective a subject?’ with the help of various adjectives and subject examples, explanations and several interesting facts.

A subject is a part of the sentence which informs us what or whom a sentence is about. In other words, subject is the doer of the action in the sentence. Adjective is a word (part of speech) which qualifies the naming word (noun) in a sentence.

See below a few examples where adjectives form the subject of the sentence.

  • 1. The tall boy plays basketball really well.
  • 2. The angry dog chased the cat away from the house.
  • 3. The old man looked extremely worried and tired.
  • 4. My sister works as a manager in Bangalore.
  • 5. That book on the table belongs to the library.

We shall here analyze how adjectives constitute the subject of a sentence.

1. The tall boy plays basketball really well.

The subject of this sentence is ‘the tall boy’ as it is telling who is doing the action of playing basket ball really well. The adjective utilized in the sentence’s subject is ‘tall’ as it is modifying the noun ‘boy’ in the subject.

2. The angry dog chased the cat away from the house.

‘The angry dog’ is the subject of the sentence because it is telling what chased the cat away from the house. The adjective which is a part of this subject is ‘angry’, as it is describing the naming word ‘dog’ in the subject.

3. The old man looked extremely worried and tired.

The subject of this sentence is ‘the old man’ as it is telling who looked extremely worried and tired. The adjective utilized in the sentence’s subject is ‘old’ as it is modifying the noun ‘man’ in the subject.

4. My sister works as a manager in Bangalore.

‘My sister’ is the subject of the sentence because it is telling us who works as a manager in Bangalore. The adjective which is a part of this subject is ‘my’, as it is describing the naming word ‘sister’ in the subject by showing possession.

5. That book on the table belongs to the library.

The subject of this sentence is ‘that book on the table’ as it is telling which book belongs to the library. The adjective utilized in the sentence’s subject is ‘that book’ as it is modifying the noun ‘book’ in the subject by demonstrating it.

When is an adjective a subject?

An adjective is a subject when it is modifying, quantifying, qualifying or describing the nouns and noun phrases which are in the subject of the sentence.

Example: Ten sheets are required to cover all the notebooks.

‘Ten sheets’ is the subject of the above sentence because it is about this the sentence is about. It tells us what is required to cover all the notebooks. ‘Ten’ is the adjective in the subject as it is quantifying (modifying) the noun ‘sheets’ in the subject by telling us extra information on how many sheets are required.

Why are adjectives considered subject?

Adjectives are considered as subject because they give us additional extra information about the subject of the sentence when they describe the nouns or noun phrases that make up the subject.

Example: Brand new watches are quite stylish and expensive.

‘Brand new’ is the adjective which is utilized in the subject of this sentence because it is giving us additional information about the noun ‘watches’ by describing it. Thus, ‘brand new’ is the adjective in the sentence’s subject ‘brand new watches’.

How is an adjective a subject?

An adjective alone cannot be the subject of a sentence. It constitutes to the entire subject. An adjective can be a part of the subject when it modifies the noun (the person or the thing) that is the subject of the sentence.

Example: The dress looks very beautiful.

In this sentence, the subject is ‘the dress’ (a noun) because it is about this dress the sentence is all about. When asked ‘what looks beautiful?’, the answer we get is the subject, ‘the dress’.

Example: The pink dress looks very beautiful.

In this sentence, the subject is ‘the pink dress’ and ‘pink’ is the adjective in it. The adjective ‘pink’ alone is not the subject, but it forms a part of the subject ‘the pink dress’. The word ‘pink’ tells us additional information about the noun ‘dress’ in the subject.

Difference between adjective and subject

A subject is nothing but the main part of the sentence, as the rest of the sentence, tells us about the subject or what the subject is doing. Thus anything or anybody (noun) performing the action in a sentence is the subject of the sentence. A subject can or cannot have an adjective in it.

Example: Niharika is reading a book.

‘Niharika’ is the subject of this sentence as it is telling us who is the doer of the action ‘reading’ in the sentence.

A word which adds more detail to the noun in a sentence is called adjective. An adjective alone thus cannot be the subject of a sentence, as it cannot perform an action on its own, but can only modify the noun, which is doing the action.

Example 1: The young girl does all the work quickly and efficiently.

‘Young’ is the adjective in the subject ‘the young girl’ here, as it is giving us extra information about the noun ‘girl’ in the subject. The adjective ‘young’ is just a part of the subject and not the subject in itself, as it just modifies the noun and does not perform any action. It is the noun ‘girl’ in the subject who is doing the work.

Examples of adjectives as a subject

Do go through the following example sentences in which adjectives are used in subjects.

  • 1. All children should submit the assignments by tomorrow.
  • 2. The cute baby was smiling continuously.
  • 3. The irritated manager shouted at the employees for not meeting the target.
  • 4. The palatial mansion was built by my grandfather.
  • 5. Our teacher has given us lot of home work to do.
  • 6. Many students did not attend yesterday’s test.
  • 7. The old furniture in the hall has to be replaced by new ones.
  • 8. Clever and smart Ritesh solved all the math problems quite quickly.

Examples of adjectives as a subject with detailed explanations

Here, we will be analyzing and understanding how adjectives are used as subjects or used in subjects in each of the above sentences.

1. All children should submit the assignments by tomorrow.

The subject of this sentence is ‘all children’ as it is telling us who should submit (action word) the assignments by tomorrow. The adjective utilized in the sentence’s subject is ‘all’ as it is quantifying the noun ‘children’ in the subject by conveying to us the indefinite number of children.

2. The cute baby was smiling continuously.

‘The cute baby’ is the subject of the sentence because it is telling us who was smiling (action) continuously. The adjective which is a part of this subject is ‘cute’, as it is describing the naming word ‘baby’ in the subject.

3. The irritated manager shouted at the employees for not meeting the target.

‘The irritated manager’ is the subject of the sentence because it is telling us who shouted (verb) at the employees for not meeting the target. The adjective which is a part of this subject is ‘irritated’ as it is describing the naming word (noun) ‘manager’ in the subject.

4. The palatial mansion was built by my grandfather.

The subject of this sentence is ‘the palatial mansion’ as it is telling us what was built (action word) by my grandfather .The adjective utilized in the sentence’s subject is ‘palatial’ as it is qualifying the noun ‘mansion’ in the subject.

5. Our teacher has given us lot of home work to do.

‘Our teacher’ is the subject of the sentence because it is telling us who has given (verb) us lot of home work to do. The adjective which is a part of this subject is ‘our’ as it is describing the naming word (noun) ‘teacher’ in the subject by showing possession or belongingness.

6. Many students did not attend yesterday’s test.

‘Many students’ is the subject of the sentence because it is telling us who did not attend (action) yesterday’s test. The adjective which is a part of this subject is ‘many’, as it is describing the naming word ‘students’ in the subject by telling us the number of students.

7. The old furniture in the hall has to be replaced by new ones.

The subject of this sentence is ‘the old furniture in the hall’ as it is telling us what have to be replaced (action word) by new ones. The adjective utilized in the sentence’s subject is ‘old’ as it is qualifying the noun ‘furniture’ in the subject.

8. Clever and smart Ritesh solved all the math problems quite quickly.

The subject of this sentence is ‘clever and smart Ritesh’ as they are telling us who solved (action word) all the math problems quite quickly. The adjectives utilized in the above sentence’s subject are ‘clever’ and ‘smart’ as they are both qualifying the naming word (noun) ‘Ritesh’ in the subject by saying about the nature of  Ritesh.

Are adjectives a part of the simple subject?

No, adjectives cannot be part of the simple subject because a simple subject is just a single naming word (noun). A simple subject cannot have anything other than the noun that is performing the action in the sentence.

Example: Rahul is writing his home work.

In this sentence, the simple subject is ‘Rahul’, as it is just a single naming word, the noun, who is the doer of the action ‘writing’.

Thus, not only adjectives, no other words can be a part of the simple subject.

Are adjectives a part of the complete subject?

Yes, adjectives are part of the complete subject because, a complete subject is a subject that consists of other words such as adjectives,  articles, modifiers, determiners and so on which form a part of the entire subject by giving additional information about the noun in the subject.

Example: The kind and calm boy was loved by all.

In this sentence, the complete subject is , ‘the kind and calm boy’, as it consists of an article ‘the’, a conjunction ‘and’, two adjectives  ‘kind’ and ‘calm’ along with the noun ‘boy’. The adjectives, ‘kind’ and ‘calm’ which are  part of the complete subject, tells us additional information about the noun ‘boy’ in the subject who is receiving the action of being loved in the sentence.

Thus, adjectives and also other words can only be a part of the complete subject.

Conclusion

Thus for the question, ‘is adjective a subject?’, we got the answer ‘yes’. Adjectives can be subjects (part of subjects) when they are giving us additional details about the nouns or noun phrases that form the subject of a sentence.

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