What are Modifiers? Modifiers Definition, Types of Modifiers and Examples

What are Modifiers? Modifiers Definition, Types of Modifiers and Examples

Modifiers: Definition, Types

A modifier is a word/clause that modifies the meaning of other words in a sentence. A modifier is an adjective or an adverb, to be precise. Adverbs modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs; adjectives modify nouns; and adverbs modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. Examine the meanings of adjectives and adverbs in greater depth.

  • Amelia bought a chocolate cookie yesterday.

(The word ‘a’ modifies the word ‘cookie,’ while the word ‘chocolate’ is a direct adjective of the word ‘cookie.’) As a result, the adjectives ‘a’ and ‘chocolate’ modify the noun ‘cookie.’ The term ‘yesterday’ indicates when the activity, i.e. the verb ‘purchased,’ took place. As a result, it’s an adverb that modifies a verb.) 

  • Maiden, our teacher’s daughter, is very sick.

(The phrase ‘our teacher’s daughter’ modifies the word ‘Maiden’ in this case.) “Our teacher” modifies the noun ‘daughter’ in this sentence, but when it modifies the noun ‘Maiden,’ the entire phrase becomes an adjective. Another adjective,’ sick,’ is modified by the adverb very.’) 

  • The white(adjective) dog was barking at me calmly(adverb).



Pre-modifiers are modifiers that change the meaning of the words that come after them in the phrase. Adjectives are frequently put before nouns in standard use. As a result, the majority of the adjectives are pre-modifiers. Adverbs are frequently used in front of the nouns they modify.


  • Generally(adverb) the(article) black (descriptive adjective) dogs are nice.
  • Apparently(adverb), that(demonstrative) school has a lot of(determiners) security(adjective) porcess.
  • Give me that(demonstrative) blue (descriptive adjective) covered (past participle) shining (present participle) chest.



Modifiers that come after the words they modify are known as post-modifiers. Adverbs are usually placed after verbs and altered. Some adjectives, on the other hand, come after the nouns and alter them.

The majority of the time adverbs, manner adverbs, and place/direction adverbs appear after the verbs they modify.


  • Jason Roy, a cricketer, (appositive) has been selected in the squad(adverb).
  • Tony, our teacher, (appositive) gives us tasks to do (infinitive – adjective) in the class (adverb of place).
  • Lionel Messi, the captain of the Argentina team, (appositive) plays exceptionally (adverb of manner)


 Misplaced Modifiers

One of the most typical issues is deciding where to put them. When modifiers are positioned too distant from the word they modify, they might produce confusion or unintentional comedy in a phrase.

Modifier Restrictions Only and always are examples of limiting modifiers that impose limits on the subject, noun, or pronoun they immediately precede. Here’s a list of some additional frequent limiting modifiers:

  • Just
  • Almost
  • Hardly
  • At first
  • Simply


  • Only Jess wants pizza.
  • Jess wants pizza only.


Jessica, on the other hand, expresses her desire for pizza with the preceding statement.

The easiest method to make sure a limited modifier is used correctly in a sentence is to think about the meaning you want to express and make sure the subject or word connected with that meaning is put as near to the limited modifier as feasible.