Adjective ordering

Linguists were curious about how the ordering of adjectives can make a phrase sound more natural. In a series of studies they found when less subjective adjectives (or more concrete adjectives) were placed closer to a noun the more natural the phrase sounded. For example, consider the phrase: The brown cute puppy. Now compare that with the phrase: The cute brown puppy.  Does the first one sound a little wacky? Does the second one sound a little more natural? In the case of the cute brown puppy the adjective brown is less subjective than cute. By placing the less subjective adjective (brown) closer to the noun (the puppy) the phrase becomes more natural. Now that this adjective pattern has been found these linguists say the next step is to start exploring why we are hardwired to structure our adjectives in this order? 

photo cred: It is bluebonnet season here in Austin, TX and my brown cute puppy…errr I mean cute brown puppy Jade and I like to go on hikes while the flowers are in bloom.