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Confused about adjective placement

 

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  #1  
Old July 01, 2016, 10:02 PM
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Confused about adjective placement

Hi all. I've been away for a long time, but I'm still working on my Spanish, albeit slowly!

This has been bugging me for a long time. I know the adjective normally follows the noun it describes, but apparently there are times when it goes before the noun. Below are examples from a word-of-the-day I subscribe to:


1. Los recién casados se hospedaron en un suntuoso hotel en la Riviera Maya.
The newlyweds stayed in a lavish hotel on the Mayan Riviera.

2. El suntuoso Palacio de Versalles fue usado con fines políticos por Luis XIV.
The magnificent Palace of Versailles was used for political purposes by Louis XIV.

In both examples, suntuoso precedes hotel and Palacio de Versalles. In #2 políticos follows fines, which makes sense to me, so why is suntuoso the opposite? They are both adjectives, are they not?

If someone can help me understand this, I will be eternally grateful!

Last edited by Rusty; July 01, 2016 at 10:23 PM. Reason: removed markup and links
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  #2  
Old July 01, 2016, 10:32 PM
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The adjective in question falls into the category of adjectives that emphasize an essential quality of the nouns they describe. These typically precede the noun.

Without the adjective (which is only there to give emphasis), we would already assume that the palace is magnificent or that a hotel on the Riviera is lavish.
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Old July 02, 2016, 08:04 AM
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Ahhh, I think I understand. Thanks Rusty! I will have to study more instances before it really sinks in. Sorry about pasting the links. I copied it from my email and didn't realize it would do that. Thanks also for fixing!
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Old July 03, 2016, 02:27 PM
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I will say it once and again:

Se reunieron en el palacio suntuoso (no se reunieron en el otro palacio venido a menos)

Se reunieron en el suntuoso palacio (el palacio es suntuoso; la suntuosidad es una de las características más destacadas de ese palacio en particular)

Se reunieron en el palacio (es un palacio cualquiera, más probablemente uno no suntuoso)

recién casados = newlyweds
casados recién = married just a moment ago

fines políticos (as opposed to "fines culturales" or "fines recreativos")
fines ulteriores (ulterior motives; as opposed to "fines aparentes" or "fines propuestos")
malévolos fines (evil motives: those motives are evil; not specially evil, not remarkably evil, not emphatically evil, but evil as a whole)
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Old July 04, 2016, 09:21 AM
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This is very helpful. Thanks aleCcowaN!
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