The basic rule pertaining to the placement of adverbs in a sentence is to place adverbs after verbs but in front of adjectives or other adverbs, but variations are possible. The adverb is placed immediately after the verb when the verb has an object, as in the first example, or the adverb has a short form, as in the second.
Adverb Placement in a Sentence
El examen es horriblemente difícil.
The exam is horribly difficult.
Mis abuelos hablan bien el castellano.
My grandparents speak Castillian well.
Adverbs of time
Since the main job of adverbs is to modify verbs, adverbs may include words that indicate the time in which the action of the verb is done. The following list includes some of the adverbs that are not based on adjectives. Add these to your list of important vocabulary words.
While other types of adverbs are generally placed after the verb, the placement of adverbs of time is generally pretty flexible. They can either precede or follow the verb of the sentence without changing the meaning.
Adverbs of manner
Adverbs of manner tell how something is done. Many of the adverbs created from adjectives are adverbs that indicate the manner in which a verb is done. When an adverb is modifying a verb, it will immediately follow the verb it modifies unless there is a direct object after the verb. If there happens to be a direct object after the verb, the adverb will follow the direct object.
Adverbs that modify adjectives or adverbs
When an adverb is used to modify an adjective or another adverb, it will be placed in front of the adjective or adverb it modifies. Many of these adverbs act as intensifiers. For example, the adverb “very” can intensify the adjective “intelligent;” it also can modify the adverb “intelligently” as in, “He speaks very intelligently.” The same is true in Spanish.
The following are some common adverbs that can be used to intensify (modify) an adjective or an adverb.