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positive (degree of adjectives)

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positive (degree of adjectives)

Jeffrey Strausser and José Paniza, Painless English for Speakers of Other Languages (Barron's, 2007)

Definition:

In grammar, the basic, uncompared form of an adjective or adverb, as opposed to either the comparative or superlative.

C. Edward Good notes that "the raw adjective--in its positive state--merely describes the noun modified; it doesn't care about how this particular person or thing stacks up against other members of the same noun class" (Whose Grammar Book Is This Anyway? 2002).

See also:

Etymology:

From the Latin, "to place"

Examples:

  • "To find a fault is easy; to do better may be difficult."
    (Plutarch)


  • "It should be our care not so much to live a long life as a satisfactory one."
    (Seneca)


  • "Animals are such agreeable friends: they ask no questions, they pass no criticisms."
    (George Eliot)


  • "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."
    (Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina)


  • "Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example."
    (Mark Twain)


  • "The inspirational value of the space program is probably of far greater importance to education than any input of dollars."
    (Arthur C. Clarke)


  • "Humanity has advanced, when it has advanced, not because it has been sober, responsible, and cautious, but because it has been playful, rebellious, and immature."
    (Tom Robbins)
Pronunciation: POZ-i-tiv
Also Known As: positive degree, absolute degree
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