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6 Minute Grammar

Too much / too many / enough / not enough / very

Meaning and use
In English, we can use too, enough and very with adjectives to indicate degree. Too describes something negative or unwanted, enough describes the right amount of something, and very makes the adjective stronger.

Matthew: Those shoes were very nice. Did you buy them?
Simon: No, I didn’t. They were too expensive.

Jenny: Did you buy that dress?
Sally: No, I didn’t. It wasn’t big enough.

We can also use too with much and many to talk about an amount or number of something which is more or less than what we want or need. For countable nouns, such as ‘apples’ or ‘people’, we use many. For uncountable nouns, like ‘rice’ or ‘water’, we use much.

There are too many people on the bus.
There is too much salt in this soup.


For degree, we use too + adjective.

For amount or number, the order is too + many/much + noun.

It’s too hot in here.
James ate too much pizza.
Too many people came to the theatre.

Enough comes after an adjective or before a noun:

adjective + enough

enough + noun

My handwriting is good enough.
His car isn’t fast enough.
We have enough food.
I don’t have enough money.

Very comes before adjectives and makes them stronger:

very + adjective

not very + adjective

That test was very difficult.
The weather’s not very nice today.


There are too many people in the pool.
We have enough money to buy a house.


There aren’t enough tickets for the show.
That meal wasn’t too expensive.


Are you comfortable enough?
Are there enough chairs for everyone?

Take note: strong adjectives

We do not use very if the adjective is already strong. These examples are wrong:

The pianist was very excellent.
The Grand Canyon is very enormous.
Her response was very correct.

These are correct:

That movie was incredible.
Her performance was dreadful.
The weather’s perfect.

Spoken English

The word enough is pronounced with the short vowel sound /ʌ/ (as in cup) and the voiceless sound /f/ (as in fat) at the end.

I don’t have enough /ɪnʌf/money.

credit: BBC Learning English

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