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sentence adverb

This Grammar.com article is about sentence adverb — enjoy your reading!

A sentence adverb modifies an entire sentence or clause. According to top authorities, adverbs, including those ending in ‑ly, can modify entire sentences. Here are some examples drawn from reputable sources:

Unhappily, there are times when violence is the only way in which justice can be secured. —T.S. Eliot's Murder in the Cathedral (1935).

Agreeably, he asked me my name and where I lived. —A 1987 issue of The New Yorker.

Frankly, I do not wish to stop them. —Brian Moore's The Colour of Blood (1987).

Be careful, however. If you start a sentence with the sentence adverb hopefully, your readers might get their noses out of joint. The structure is correct, but it has a bad reputation.

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