How to use and differentiate between linking verb and main verb?
For example, in the below sentences, should I use adjective or adverb:
- He did great / greatly.
- She dances amazing / amazingly.
- He smells bad / badly.
Please tell me if there is any rule or tips that would make it easier to understand and use.
An adverb is used to modify a verb, whereas an adjective is used to modify a noun. This is one of those situations in English, where native speakers often do not follow correct grammar rules.
“He did greatly.” is technically correct, but it is not idiomatic. Instead, one would say “He did well” (well is the adverbial form of “good”) or “He did great,” which is technically incorrect, but very idiomatic, as it leaves out (but implies) “work,” which “great” should modify (people would also just say “He did great work.”)
“She dances amazingly.” is technically correct, but not idiomatic. Instead one would probably say “She is an amazing dancer.” “She dances amazingly” could mean that she is presently dancing really well, or that–in general–she is a good dancer. “She is an amazing dancer” only can mean that she is a good dancer in general. “Her dancing is amazing,” however, is also idiomatic and could mean either that she is presently dancing really well, or that–in general–she is a good dancer.
“He smells badly.” is technically correct, but not idiomatic. Instead on would say “He smells bad.”