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Mais où doit-on placer l'adverbe ?
In English we can be quite flexible when placing adverbs. No doubt there are grammar rules, but we don't seem to be too bothered if these are flexed.

In French, however, we have to be more precise.

In this video Patricia at Home Language takes us through the basics.

In the first category, la forme affimative, the adverb immediately follows the verb.

However, in la forme négative, the placement changes depending on the adverb.

In most cases the adverb immediately follows the negation word pas, but with certain adverbs the placement is before pas.

She offers this short list of the adverbs concerned, which isn't comprehensive.

Probablement
S
ûrement
Certainement
G
énéralement
Peut-
être
Sans doute


Although Patricia states that she doesn't know of a rule for this difference, it appears from the above list that the adverbs concerned express either doubt or certainty.

It's very easy to get it wrong when using adverbs in French but this guide should help you choose correctly most of the time. As always, rules in French invariably have some exceptions!
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