They answer the question ‘how many?’ Numeral adjectives are of three kinds: definite numeral adjectives, indefinite numeral adjectives and distributive numeral adjectives.
Definite numeral adjectives
Both cardinal (e.g. one, two, three, four etc.) and ordinal numbers (e.g. first, second, third, forth etc.) belong to this category.
- I have bought six eggs.
- Who was the first woman to win the Nobel Prize for Physics?
Indefinite numeral adjectives
They indicate an indefinite number. Examples are: some, many, few, all, no, several etc.
- I have bought some mangoes. (We don’t know exactly how many mangoes.)
- There were few children in the class.
- I have bought all the tickets available.
- There are no birds on the tree.
Note that indefinite numeral adjectives can also be used as adjectives of quantity. When they are used as adjectives of quantity, they are followed by singular uncountable nouns.
- I have bought some eggs. (Indefinite numeral adjective)
- I have bought some milk. (Adjective of quantity)
Distributive numeral adjectives
Distributive numeral adjectives are considered as the same as distributive adjectives. Examples are: each, every, either and neither.
- Each hand has five fingers.
- Every child needs love.
- Either method is correct.
- Neither method is wrong.
Distributive numeral adjectives should be followed by a singular noun and a singular verb. However, we use a plural noun and a singular verb after each of, every one of, either of and neither of.
- Either of the methods is correct. (NOT Either of the method is correct.)