Grammar Patterns

Graded and ungraded adjectives

Pattern 19: how ADJ n v-link

The adjective follows how and is followed by a noun and a link verb.
Sometimes this pattern is used in exclamations.
How complicated it was!
How glad I am that you have Tom Pullings with you.
How lucky I was to have found someone who loved me this way.
How tough and wiry she looked.
How wise you are, my darling.
Sometimes this pattern is used to emphasize the fact that someone or something has a quality to a great degree.
It frightened me to see just how addicted our youngsters have become to computer games.
I mean, nobody could possibly realize how awestruck we were.
Other chapels to either side of the altar contain substantial early frescoes, hints as to how beautiful the church must once have been.
It is also easy to forget just how busy things were hardly more than a year ago.
They don't know how dangerous this stuff is.
I've told you how fond I am of Lena.
Everyone talks about how good Italian football is.
Sometimes it is used when reporting questions or referring to something uncertain.
She's worried about how clean the building will be.
The question of how friendly a teacher can be with her class pupils has long been a matter of concern for educators.
We've no idea how old the skull is.
Sometimes it is used after a phrase such as no matter to indicate that the fact that someone or something may have a quality to a great degree does not matter.
No matter how boring filing paperwork is, being organised will give you more free time.
When the adjective with how follows a phrase such as no matter, the link verb is sometimes not included. This pattern is how ADJ n.
Finally, no matter how abusive the memo, never chuck it at your boss's head.
Everyone, no matter how bad their anxiety, no matter how long they have been anxious, can banish their anxiety.

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