Good news! There is an easy way in English to form a compound adjective, i.e. an adjective made of two –sometimes three– words.
You have probably already seen some and there are different types of words that can be used to make a compound adjective but here, you will learn how to make a compound adjective using a number and a noun.
How it helps and when you may need it:
It is a good, useful way to avoid longer sentences. Remember that in English, sentences are usually quite short. They are more direct than in many other languages.
How to form a compound adjective with a number and a noun:
Take a number, add the singular noun you need, hyphenate them and there, you have your adjective!
Say you want to talk about a hotel that has a rating of five stars.
Take the number: five
Add the noun in the singular form: star
Hyphenate them: five–star
Now when you want to talk about that hotel, you can say it is a five-star hotel.
Careful! Remember to keep the noun in the singular form even if the number makes you feel there should be an s for the plural because, as you know, it is now an adjective and there is no s at the end of adjectives in English! Also, remember to add a hyphen between the number and the noun.
You can combine any number with a noun in the same way. Look at more examples:
- a building with 6 floors → a six-floor building
- a note of 50 euros → a fifty-euro note
- a drive that lasts 20 minutes → a twenty-minute drive
- a walk that takes 5 minutes → a five-minute walk
- a flight that lasts 10 hours → a ten-hour flight
- a delay of 2 hours → a two-hour delay
- a spreadsheet with 25 columns → a twenty-five-column spreadsheet
- a teenager who is 15 years old → a fifteen-year-old teenager
There you are! Can you find more examples? Great! Future readers of this blog post will find your examples useful, too, so please share them in the comment box at the bottom of the page. Thank you! 🙂