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Lesson 12 of 20
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Free Sample – 200 Common Errors in English

Click to read transcript of lesson 20

Today we’ll focus on mistakes with adjectives and adverbs. The first one involves the word “enough”:


Don’t say:

  • This box isn’t enough big for all the books.


  • This box isn’t big enough for all the books.

Enough goes after adjectives, adverbs, and verbs:

  • Are you old enough to see this movie?
  • She’s smart enough to take the advanced class.
  • You sing well enough to be a professional!
  • The teacher speaks slowly enough for me to understand.
  • I play the piano, but I don’t practice enough.
  • Make sure you eat enough now so that you’re not hungry later.

Enough goes before nouns:

  • There are enough chairs for everybody to sit down.
  • There isn’t enough information in this report; I need more details.
  • We don’t have enough people to form a soccer team.
  • Do you have enough money to buy that motorcycle?


Don’t say:

  • I can’t believe how much stubborn he is.


  • I can’t believe how stubborn he is.

We only use how much and how many before nouns.

With adjectives and adverbs, we use only how:

  • How tall are you?
  • I want to see how comfortable the couch is before buying it.
  • How quickly can they finish the project?
  • This software measures how efficiently the employees are working.


Don’t say:

  • These are my favorites shoes.


  • These are my favorite shoes.
  • These shoes are my favorites.

Adjectives before nouns are always singular in English, even if the noun is plural!

  • Our house has three small rooms.
  • The forest is filled with giant trees.
  • I have a couple of friendly dogs.
  • I’ve finished this book, now I’ll read the other ones I borrowed from the library.

Some adjectives – especially “others” – can be used in plural form, if the noun was mentioned earlier (and is not directly after the adjective). Here are two examples:

  • I have many pairs of shoes, but these red shoes are my favorites.

(= favorite shoes)

  • The boss gave raises to some employees but not others.

(= other employees)

  • Some of the shows on this channel are great, and others are terrible.

(= other shows on this channel)


Don’t say:

  • Last night I was a lot tired.


  • Last night I was so/very/really tired.

The words so, very, really, are all used before adjectives and adverbs to add emphasis or describe something that is intense:

  • This book is so/very/really interesting.
  • She plays the piano so/very/really well!
  • They moved here so/very/really recently.

A lot of / lots of are used before nouns to describe a large quantity:

  • I ate a lot of / lots of pizza last night.
  • There were a lot of / lots of kids at the playground.

Note that it’s always a lot and never alot.

We can also use a lot after verbs to describe something we do frequently/often:

  • I read a lot.
  • Do you exercise a lot?


Don’t say:

  • My new computer is more better than my old one.


  • My computer is better than my old one.
  • My computer is much better than my old one.

Let’s review how we form comparative adjectives:

  • 1 syllable: fast → faster
  • Words ending in Y: easy → easier
  • 2+ syllables: popular → more popular
  • Irregular: good/bad → better/worse

We only use “more” to make comparisons using adjectives of 2+ syllables: more popular, more interesting, more efficient, more comfortable, etc. The word “better” is already a comparative, so we shouldn’t add “more.”

If you want to add extra emphasis to a comparative, you can add “much”:

  • My new computer is much better than my old one.

(not just a little bit better… MUCH better)

  • This lesson is much easier than yesterday’s.
  • My sister is much more popular than me.
  • The problem is much worse than we imagined.


Don’t say:

  • My apartment is ten miles far from here.


  • My apartment is ten miles away fromhere.

When talking about general long distances, we can say far from or far away from:

  • My apartment is far (away) from here.

However, when talking about a specific distance, we say away from or simply from:

  • My apartment is ten miles away from here.
  • My apartment is ten miles from here.

This is confusing because the question might ask “How far…?” but we don’t use the word “far” when giving an answer with a specific distance:

  • How far is the nearest gas station? / Where is the nearest gas station?
  • It’s about two blocks away.
  • How far is the museum from here?
  • At least five miles – you should probably take the bus.

You can only use “far” in the answer when speaking in general terms:

  • It’s not far. (it’s a short distance away)
  • It’s pretty/quite/very far. (it’s a long distance away)

That’s all for now. The next lesson is our last one in the grammar section, and I’ll teach you about a number of mistakes that I’ve found in my students’ written English, which they’ve sent in for correction in other courses. See you next time!

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Free Sample Lessons

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  1. Lesson 1 – Introduction & Errors with countable and uncountable nouns
  2. Lesson 2 – Errors with all of, most of, some of, one of
  3. Lesson 3 – Errors with “it”
  4. Lesson 4 – Errors with possessives and pronouns
  5. Lesson 5 – Errors with singular and plural verbs
  6. Lesson 6 – Errors with “have”
  7. Lesson 7 – Errors with irregular verbs
  8. Lesson 8 – Errors with irregular nouns
  9. Lesson 9 – Errors with helping verbs
  10. Lesson 10 – Errors with direct and indirect objects
  11. Lesson 11 – Errors with recommend, suggest, explain, and say
  12. Lesson 12 – Errors with common verbs
  13. Lesson 13 – Errors with verb tenses
  14. Lesson 14 – Errors with “a”
  15. Lesson 15 – Errors with “the”
  16. Lesson 16 – Errors with “in” and “on”
  17. Lesson 17 – Errors with “of”
  18. Lesson 18 – Errors with “to”
  19. Lesson 19 – Errors with other prepositions
  20. Lesson 20 – Errors with adjectives and adverbs
  21. Lesson 21 – Errors from student homework
  22. Lesson 22 – Errors with similar words (Part 1)
  23. Lesson 23 – Errors with similar words (Part 2)
  24. Lesson 24 – Errors with homophones
  25. Lesson 25 – Errors with words native speakers confuse (Part 1)
  26. Lesson 26 – Errors with words native speakers confuse (Part 2)
  27. Lesson 27 – Errors from student homework
  28. Lesson 28 – Errors that spell check won’t catch
  29. Lesson 29 – Errors with words that sound the same (Part 1)
  30. Lesson 30 – Errors with words that sound the same (Part 2)
  31. Lesson 31 – Errors involving adding or removing a letter
  32. Lesson 32 – Errors involving changing a letter
  33. Lesson 33 – Errors with similar sounds
  34. Lesson 34 – Errors with difficult sounds
  35. Lesson 35 – Errors with confusing combinations of letters
  36. Lesson 36 – Errors with words that have deceptive spelling (Part 1)
  37. Lesson 37 – Errors with words that have deceptive spelling (Part 2)
  38. Lesson 38 – Errors with syllables
  39. Lesson 39 – Learning mistakes (Part 1)
  40. Lesson 40 – Learning mistakes (Part 2)
  41. Lesson 41 – Mindset mistakes (Part 1)
  42. Lesson 42 – Mindset mistakes (Part 2)
  43. Your Feedback & Next Steps
Quiz 1 of 32

Errors Quiz Lesson 20

Mark each sentence correct or incorrect, and try to fix any mistakes.

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