Grammar : Attribute

Attribute modify noun or pronoun, that can be a word, phrase or clause.
Attribute can be express in “Adjective, Adverb, noun, pronoun, numeral, Noun possessive, Infinitive, Gerund, Now Participle, Past Participle, Prepositional Phrases, clause”…
According to the different position of the attributive, it can be divided into:
Pre Attributive, Post Attribute, Double Layer Attribute and Segmentation Attribute.
Post Attributive clauses are divided into two kinds: Restrictive and Non-Restrictive.
Sometimes non-Restrictive can modify all the entire main sentence on the front.


When nouns and adjectives are used as attributes, they are usually placed in front of the modified words.
eg. [adjective] He is a new student. He is a tall man. Frozen food. Fallen leaves
eg. [noun] There are a lot of banana trees on the island. There is a swimming pool near our school.
eg. [numeral] Three thousand people watched the game.
eg. [det] Many men are working there.
When adverbs, Infinitive, preposition phrase are used as attributes, they are usually placed behind of the modified words.
    eg. [preposition phrase] The bike in the room is mine.房间里的自行车是我的.

Pre Attribute

our good manager

my father and Mother’s friend

TV shopping

the multi-media application debate

technology intensive economy

three software companies

two tons of coal

a broken window

a dancing girl

a smoking room

a never-increasing number of people

the working people

the operating conditions

the paper-making industry

man-made ice

export-oriented economy

cause a demand for improved service

    注 1:注意现在分词作前置定语的特点是:被修饰的⼈或物能产⽣前⾯ -ing 的动作。例如:
  • the hard-working people 勤劳的⼈⺠,
  • fast moving molecules 快速运动的分⼦等。
  • building materials 建筑(⽤的)材料,
  • cooling water 冷却⽤⽔,
  • the boiling temperature (或point) of water ⽔的沸点。表⽰该温度与“沸腾”或“煮开”动作有关⽽已。
  • 若写 the boiling water,则为(这)正在沸腾的⽔;
  • 若写 the boiled water,就变为“(煮)开过的⽔”。
    注 2:不定式短语、形容词短语、定语从句、⽆连字符串起来的介词短语⼀般不作前置定语。
II. 夹带介词短语的名词性词组作前置定语是名词作定语的新发展。参阅第 69 节。
    CO2 is a heavier than air gas that neither burns nor supports combustion. ⼆氧化碳是⼀种⽐空⽓重的⽓体,它既不燃烧,⼜不助燃。(若将 heavier than air 放在 gas 后作后置定语,则定语从句的关系代词that 就易被误解为修饰 air)
III. 有多个前置定语时的先后顺序通常如下:
  1. 1. 限定词,如冠词,this,those 等指⽰代词、物主代词等。但要注意冠词有时不占⾸位的⼏种情况(参阅第 1 节、定语(包括定语从句)和⼏个注意点I. 前置定语。
  2. 2. 基数词、序数词;
  3. 3. ⼀般描绘性的形容词,如 good,bad 等;
  4. 4. 表⽰⼤⼩、⾼低、⻓短等形容词,如 big,small,high,tall,low,long,short 等;
  5. 5. 表⽰形状的形容词,如 square,round 等;
  6. 6. 表⽰⽼、中、⻘、新、旧等形容词,如 old,young,new 等;
  7. 7. 表⽰颜⾊的形容词,如 red,white 等;
  8. 8. 表⽰国籍或地区、产地等⽅⾯的形容词,如 Chinese,Japanese 等;
  9. 9. 表⽰物质、材料等⽅⾯的形容词,如 rocky,wooden 等;
  10. 10. 表⽰⽤途、类别⽅⾯的形容词,如 building materials 建筑(⽤的)材料,a writing desk 写字(⽤的)台,aused car ⼀辆旧⻋(即⼀辆使⽤过的或⼆⼿汽⻋)等。
    必须指出,修饰名词的前置定语⼀般不会太多(通常不超过三、四个)如果有⼏个前置定语,⼤致可按上述顺序排列,允许循序跳着使⽤。与汉语⽐较,则和上述第 8 位的英语形容词的⽤法差别较⼤,应予以注意。

Post Attribute

Post Attribute can be divided into two kinds: Restrictive and Non-Restrictive.

Restrictive: The attribute and modified word have closely dependent.

Non-Restrictive:The attribute and modified word have far dependent.They Independent each other.

Attribute clause also divided into Restrictive and Non-Restrictive.

eg. with Post Restrictive Attribute:

the impurities difficult to remove

a student operating the computer

the ability to do work 作功的本领

at tend the Internet Symposium held in China 参加在中国举⾏的因特⽹讨论会,

sell state-owned apartments to the residents at prices compatible with their income level 以与⼯资收⼊⽔平相应的价格向居⺠出售共有住房,

something new in her paper

heat used to evaporate the water

firends from home and abroad

relatives overseas

China Today [以上两例为副词作后置定语]

establish a new type of international economic relations featuringmutual benefit, mutual support and common development 建⽴新型的互利、互补、共同发展的国际经济关系,

There is nothing the matter with your wireless pager.

Anyone with a desktop computer and a modem connecting it to a phone line can now find ways into the network.

It was the first Internet club established in Northwest China.

Video conferencing is gradually becoming an accepted means in which to do business.

eg. with Post Restrictive Attribute Clause and Double Layer Attribute:

  • We must write the programs that allow a computer to perform specific functions.
  • The company is making the new products which sell well in the computer retail business.
  • There are hardly any major industries that do not rely to some degree on computer.
  • If pirating persisted, the money (that) people needed to develop new software would simply not be forthcoming. 假如盗版持续下去,⼈们⽤于开发软件所需的资⾦就断了来源。(关系代词 that 还可省略。)
  • Can you introduce to me any one that we know who is as clever as she? (that 引出的定语从句修饰 one,⽽ who 引出的定语从句则说明 anyone that we know 整个内容,故称为双层定语。)
  • When you get a personal E-mail address, you can receive and send messages to people (whom) you know and those (whom) you want to know. 当你获得个⼈的电⼦邮件地址时,你就能收到信息并给你认识的⼈和想认识的⼈发送信息。(两个并列的限制性定语从句)
  • Web broadcasting could change the way (in which) publishers as advertisers look at the Internet. ⽹络⼴播可以改变出版商作为⼴告商时对因特⽹的看法。
  • Air moves from places where the pressure is high to places where the pressure is low.
  • They are the generation who grew up playing computer games and who had an e-mail address by the time they finished their high school. (两个who并列地引出限制性定语从句。句末时间从句仅和第⼆个定语从句有关。)
  • The disk is the medium where (或 on which) information is stored.

eg. with Post non-Restrictive Attribute and Attribute Clause:

  • We have to master a whole set of rules for how to behave, called netiquette.
  • To climb the pole, cold and wet with snow, was no easy task.
  • At the center of each atom there is nucleus, in which are found mainly protons, possessing a positive electric charge, and neutrons, possessing no charge. 每个原⼦中⼼处有⼀个原⼦核,核内主要发现有带正电的质⼦和不带电的中⼦。(现在分词短语作⾮限制性后置定语。)
  • Our forces, now in control of all the bridgeheads, were ready to take the city. 我们的部队这时已控制了所有的桥头堡,正准备占据城市。(介词短语作⾮限制性后置定语。)
  • The mouse, which was devised to make operating a computer easy, is a small, hand-held unit that, when moved around on a flat pad, moves an arrow to the required position on the screen. ⿏标是为了使电脑操作简便⽽设计的。它是⼀个可⽤⼿握住的⼩装置。当你在平⾯上挪动⿏标时,它能使屏幕上的箭头移动到你所要求的位置。(which was devised…easy 为⾮限制性定语从句。that 引出的定语从句包含⼀个时间状语从句。When 后省略 it is,⽽ it 指 that 所代表的 unit ⽽⾔。)
  • Aluminium combines high tensile strength with lightness of weight, which makes it important in aircraftconstruction. 铝兼有抗拉强度⼤与重量轻的特点,这就使得它在⻜机制造上变得很重要。(which 代替主句整个意思,引出⾮限制性定语从句。)
  • The machine, as might be expected,has stopped operating. 不出所料,机器停⽌了操作。(as 引出⾮限制性定语从句)
  • We will put off the test until next week, when the weather may be better. 我们要将试验延期到下周,那时天⽓也许会更好些。(when引出⾮限制性定语从句。)
  • In 1953 he came to Tianjin, where he has lived ever since. 他是 1953 年来天津的,从那时起他⼀直住在天津。(where 引出⾮限制性定语从句。)
  • I met the boat man, who then took me across the ferry. 我遇⻅了船夫,他把我从渡⼝渡到对岸。(who引出⾮限制性定语从句。)