top of page

Use These Common Adverbs to Increase Your English Vocabulary Instantly

Adverbs can add important description to a clause and can help you communicate your message more clearly. In this lesson, we'll focus on some of these common adverbs that you can add into your English vocabulary starting today.

Adverbs usually appear in 3 different locations and can describe a whole clause or point:

  1. Introducing a clause:  Apparently, he’s going to complain about the service.”

  2. In the middle of the verb phrase: “He’s apparently going to complain about the service.”

  3. At the end of the phrase: “He’s going to complain about the service apparently.”

List of Adverbs

Literally = introduces a statement that is not an exaggeration.  We use this phrase when there  is a chance that the listener might think that we are exaggerating and we want them to know that we are not, this is exactly the case.

  • My neighbor's music is so loud right now that I literally cannot hear my television.

  • It was so cold outside yesterday that literally I couldn’t feel my fingers or toes.

Presumably = introduces something that is a logical guess based on a reasonable assumption, but it’s not confirmed.  You are telling the listener that this is what you think is true.

  • I saw them holding hands at the party.  Presumably, they're a couple (but I don’t know for sure).

  • He’s walking with a limp.  Presumably he injured his leg somehow (but I haven’t asked him).

Apparently/Supposedly = introduces something that you have heard is true, but you haven't confirmed it personally as completely true yet

  • Apparently, New York is very dirty (but I’ve never been there).

  • The course is $700.  Supposedly, it’s worth the price, but it seems expensive. (I’ve never taken it)

Technically =  introduces something that is true according to the official rules, but you are saying this to make the point that the rules are not always followed exactly

  • Technically, I'm supposed to stay at work until 5pm every day but sometimes I leave a little early.

  • Technically, you aren’t allowed to bring your own snacks into the theatre, but everyone does it.

Consequently = introduces a result of the previous sentence, usually implying a negative result

  • There was a major snowstorm last night. Consequently, our flight was delayed for 8 hours.

  • The President was accused of corruption. Consequently, he resigned from his position.

Practice Part A: Choose the correct adverb from above to fill in the blanks (answers at end of article):

  1. ________, you shouldn't drive faster than 100km/hour on the highway because that's the speed limit but honestly everyone does it.

  2. Traffic is terrible. _______, it takes one hour to go one block on the street. Seriously, one hour!

  3. My mother got COVID right before my wedding. __________, she couldn't attend the ceremony.

  4. I haven’t talked with the employees yet, but __________ they aren’t happy with the new work contract.  That’s what my manager told me.

  5. I don't know anything about the movie "here comes the devil" but __________ it's a scary movie.

 

Ideally =  introduces something that would be true in a perfect world, but you don’t expect to happen in reality

  • Ideally the order would arrive tomorrow but because of logistics issues, it’ll likely arrive on Sunday.

  • Ideally everyone would pay their taxes honestly but a lot of people cheat the system to pay less.

Realistically = introduces what you expect with your logic and knowledge of the real world

  • Ideally, political parties should cooperate, but realistically they just argue and blame each other.

  • I wish that I could buy a big house but realistically I can only afford an apartment.

Understandably = introduces that you can empathize with how someone feels in a situation

  • Understandably, Jamie is upset that she didn't pass her driver's test yesterday.

  • Some employees are going to lose their jobs. Understandably, everyone is feeling nervous.

Ultimately = introduces the end result of a situation (after several things have already happened)

  • I applied for every job that I could find and did countless job interviews.  Ultimately, I got a job as a salesperson in a store.

  • The police spent a lot of time, money, and resources on the murder case and ultimately, they found the person who committed the murder.

Subsequently = introduces something that happens next in time (like saying “then” for time)

  • She invested her money heavily into Bitcoin.  Subsequently, the value of Bitcoin dropped dramatically.

  • We set up all the furniture outside but subsequently it started raining so we had to move everything inside.

Arguably = introduces an argument that you are presenting as a logical opinion that can be supported:

  • Arguably, social media has become the biggest invention of the 21st century.

  • Arguably, mental health is even more important than physical health.

Practice Part B: Choose the correct adverb from above to fill in the blanks (answers at end of article)

  1. Tom's grandmother passed away last night. ____________, he didn't come to work today.

  2. __________, the most innovative businesses are established in the United States.

  3. __________, everyone should arrive on time, but there are 100 people so __________, some will be late.

  4. They played the game hard with all of their effort, but _________, they lost the game by one goal.

  5. The wedding ceremony will be at 3pm.  __________, there will be a reception and dinner.

 

Essentially = introduces the basic concept of something without including all the specific details

  • I started taking an interesting course.  Essentially, it teaches you how to be a better public speaker.

  • I'm starting a business with my friend.  Essentially, it's a restaurant for people and their pets, and the pets can eat at the restaurant too.

Potentially = introduces something that could possibly happen in the future but is uncertain

  • Potentially, artificial intelligence is going to replace the work of many people.

  • Potentially, your identification could be stolen if you're not careful with your online activity

Ironically = introduces something that is true and the opposite of what you'd expect to be true

  • My husband is a professional chef.  Ironically, he hates cooking at home.

  • Ironically, the fire station caught on fire.

Hopefully = introduces something that you want to happen

  • She didn’t respond to the invitation.  Hopefully she comes.

  • I heard that he was in a car accident.  Hopefully he wasn’t injured.

Thankfully/Fortunately = introduces something that already happened, and you are happy about

  • I was really nervous about the exam, but thankfully, I passed.

  • I forgot my presentation notes at home but thankfully, I remembered what to say without them.

Practice Part C: Choose the correct adverb from above to fill in the blanks (answers at end of article)

  1. I have a big job interview tomorrow. __________ it goes well.

  2. I lost my wallet at the park, but __________ somebody found it and gave it to the police.

  3. The problem with our computer system is complicated, but __________, it’s a virus that causes computers to erase their own data.

  4. __________ he played his best game of his whole career when he was sick with the flu.

  5. __________ employees could go on strike if they're not happy with the company's working conditions.

Answers

Practice Part A:

  1. Technically, you shouldn't drive faster than 100km/hour on the highway because that's the speed limit but honestly everyone does it.

  2. Traffic is terrible. Literally, it takes one hour to go one block on the street.  Seriously, one hour!

  3. My mother got COVID right before my wedding. Consequently, she couldn't attend the ceremony.

  4. I haven’t talked with the employees yet, but apparently they aren’t happy with the new work contract.  That’s what my manager told me.

  5. I don't know anything about the movie "here comes the devil" but presumably it's a scary movie.

Practice Part B:

  1. Tom's grandmother passed away last night. Understandably, he didn't come to work today.

  2. Arguably, the most innovative businesses are established in the United States.

  3. Ideally, everyone should arrive on time, but there are 100 people so realistically, some will be late.

  4. They played the game hard with all of their effort, but ultimately, they lost the game by one goal.

  5. The wedding ceremony will be at 3pm.  Subsequently, there will be a reception and dinner.

Practice Part C:

  1. I have a big job interview tomorrow. Hopefully, it goes well.

  2. I lost my wallet at the park, but thankfully somebody found it and gave it to the police.

  3. The problem with our computer system is complicated, but essentially, it’s a virus that causes computers to erase their own data.

  4. Ironically, he played his best game of his whole career when he was sick with the flu.

  5. Potentially, employees could go on strike if they're not happy with the company's working conditions.

Комментарии


bottom of page