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Flourishing as an adjective[edit]

Can't "flourishing" also be used as an adjective, e.g. "He owned a flourishing business."? I checked another online source ( and it appears to be the case. However as I am a complete newbie I thought I'd open a talk page first to check with someone more qualified before editing. Cheers. Tooironic 23:09, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

Virtually every noun can be used as an adjective with about the same meaning as the noun. That is called attributive use of the noun "He has a flourishing business", as opposed to predicate use: "His business is flourishing". We don't usually show a word as being an adjective unless:
  1. it can used other than attributively, ie, after a form of "be"
  2. it can form a comparative or superlative with more or most
  3. it is gradable, ie, can be modified by words like "very".
With words ending in -ing, the predicate test requires a lot of care in interpretation and may not lead to an answer. So the question is: Are either of the other two attestable? Actually, I think we would settle for 3 quotes in total displaying comparability or gradability. The best sources for quotes are google books and COCA. DCDuring TALK 08:55, 26 July 2009 (UTC)
I think that this word would qualify as an adjective. OTOH, hospitality would probably not. I added a sense to the noun that supports more directly the modern sense found in "I work in hospitality, you know, the hopitality industry." Note how it would fail the tests above. DCDuring TALK 09:01, 26 July 2009 (UTC)