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Lesson 11.3


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“Even” can be used as either an adjective or an adverb, but keep in mind the meanings are different. As an adjective, “even” has several meanings including “uniform”, “flat”, “fair” or “equal”, among others. Here we will discuss the meanings and uses of “even” as an adverb. When used as an adverb in English, “even” expresses surprise or can be used to emphasize difference when making comparisons.

Grammatical Rules

1. “Even” is generally found before the verb which it modifies.


 My son loves to learn. He even studies on weekends and holidays.
 Even working 12 hour days, I wasn’t able to finish the project on time.

2. When it is found at the beginning of a clause, “even” refers to the subject.


 Even I know better than to try to change his mind.
 Even the best athletes can have bad days.

3. We can place “even” before other words we want to emphasize.


 I love their music, even the later albums which didn’t receive good reviews.
 He loves food. He’ll eat anything, even our mother’s cooking!

4. “Even” is used in the negative to express extremes in the the negative.


 I can’t even imagine what you must have thought when he told you the news.
 She’s very clumsy. She can’t even walk without tripping.

5. “Even” is used in comparisons for stress. The use of “even” is meant to add emphasis to the difference(s) between the objects being compared. In the case of comparisons, “even” is found before the adjective or adverb.


 My brother is very tall. He is even taller than my father.
 I know I talk a lot, but Andrew talks even more than me.

6. “Even”, when used with other words such as “though”, “if”, “so” or “when”, functions as a conjunction.


 Even though it was cloudy, we went to the beach.
 Even if I study a lot, I will never understand chemistry.
 He knew it was a bad idea. Even so, he drove home after having several drinks.
 Even when things seemed the worse, she was still optimistic.

Note: “Even so” is used in much the same way as “but” or “however”, though in using “even so” we are emphasizing the the fact that something is surprising, unusual or unexpected.

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11.2 Enough and Too
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11.4 Else

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