#80 - Adverbs of Certainty - English Grammar

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Adverbs of Certainty

Adverbs of certainty indicate how certain or sure we feel about an action. They are usually placed before the main verb unless it is a "be" verb (is/am/are). Adverbs of certainty go after "be" verbs.

Adverbs of Certainty - Examples
  • Probably - to be most likely; almost certain
  • Definitely - in a definite manner
  • Clearly - to be clear about something
  • Certainly - to be sure of something
  • Surely - to say with confidence
  • Undoubtedly - to say without doubt

Adverbs of Certainty with "Be" Verbs

In sentences with "be" verbs (is, am, are), adverbs of certainty are placed after the "be" verb.
  • She is definitely unhappy at her job.
  • He is undoubtedly a hard worker.
  • The singers are certainly talented.

Adverbs of Certainty with Regular Verbs

With regular verbs, adverbs of certainty are placed before the verb.
  • She surely looks like her mother.
  • He probably passed the test.
  • They clearly do not enjoy this class.

Adverbs of Certainty with Auxiliary Verbs

Adverbs of certainty can be used with other types of verbs such as auxiliary verbs or helping verbs. Auxiliary verbs are used with main verbs. Most common auxiliary verbs are "be, do, have" verbs.
  • She is definitely going to college.
  • He has certainly given much of his time.
  • We will probably eat at home.

Adverbs of Certainty at the Beginning of the Sentence

Sometimes adverbs of certainty can be placed at the beginning of a sentence.
  • Certainly, you know what is going on.
  • Probably, she has gotten lost.
  • Undoubtedly, Michael Jordan was one of the greatest basketball players of all time.
  • Surely, someone is home with the child.

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