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Confusing "Bad" and "Badly"

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If you've been linked to this, you probably made a language mistake and whoever sent this to you cared enough to point it out. The best thing to do is read the details and see where you went wrong.


"Bad" is an adjective, that is, a word that describes nouns (persons, places, things, ideas). "That was a bad idea." Here, "bad" describes "idea".

"Badly" is an adverb, that is, a word that describes an verb (action or state of being) or an adjective. "You did badly in the interview." Here, "badly" describes a verb (the action "did"). "They were badly hurt." Here, "badly" describes an adjective ("hurt").

Additional Note: You may hear some people claim that "I feel badly" is correct since "badly" describes "feel". But this is wrong since to "badly feel" means being unable to feel (for example, if one is numb). "I feel bad" is correct since "bad" actually describes "I", a person, in an emotional state.

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