[ELI5] why do we use words in order like “the cute little red car” and not something like “the little red cute car”?


[ELI5] why do we use words in order like “the cute little red car” and not something like “the little red cute car”?

In: 267

I can’t remember the exact order, but there is a list that the adjectives have to be in for it to make sense. This is not something that is directly taught, but learned through talking with people

Because everyone agreed to, or have been taught the Royal Order Of Adjectives, it’s just something that a good amount of people don’t know that they know it

[Royal Order Of Adjectives ](https://lushthecontentagency.com/blog/copywriting-royal-order-of-adjectives/)

It’s just one of the inexplicable, random rules of language. There isn’t really a “why”, it just sounds odd to English speakers to place things in any other order. Other languages use different Adjectives do have the same order every time, though, as follows:

Quantity, Quality, Size, Age, Shape, Color, “Proper Adjective”, and Purpose.

“Proper Adjective” is a category that can include nationality, place of origin, or material.

This is more strict in English than most of our other grammar rules, and it’s rare to find deviations.

Clifford the **big red** dog. (Size, color).

I want to order **three huge square French** beignets. (Quantity, size, shape, “Proper”)

I need **four good small young curved green Canadian sports** bananas to give my **two awful midsized ancient blocky red metallic seeing-eye** monkeys is a more or less incomprehensible phrase in English, but it serves pretty well to give two examples of each category of adjective and their order, if that helps you make sense of things. But again, there’s little “why” to be had. Languages are generally pretty arbitrary.

In this example you gave: the first one tells me the speaker thinks the car is cute because it’s little and red and those describe the cars physical attributes to distinguish it amongst other “cars”. In the second sentence I gather only that the speaker thinks the car is cute..and uses little and red to again distinguish which car they are referring to.

It’s one of those unwritten rules of the English language that everyone just kinda picks up as they learn the language. Tom Scott [Did a video on it.](https://youtu.be/mTm1tJYr5_M)