A similar process of elaboration is found in Classifier°Thing structures in nominal groups (Halliday 1985: 164-5). … A number of examples are presented in Table 5.8 and contrasted with descriptive Epithet°Thing structures in parentheses. Note that a frying fish is not usually a kind of fish, but rather a fish that is frying.
Table 5.8. Elaboration and extension in the nominal group Nominal groupclassifier = thing (epithet + thing) frying pan (frying + fish) spectator fleet (visiting + fleet) deciding race (good + race) nominal group (difficult + group) red wine (nice + wine) brick wall (green + wall) first prize (lousy + prize) tenor saxophone (new + saxophone)
 The logical difference between Classifier–Thing relations and Epithet–Thing relations is not the expansion opposition of elaboration versus extension. The genuine Epithets here, like most of the Classifiers, elaborate the Thing, rather than extend it. It is the same logical relation that obtains in intensive relational clauses: the race was good, this group is difficult, the wine is nice, the wall is green, the prize was lousy, the saxophone is new.
 The examples frying fish and visiting fleet are Classifier^Thing structures, not Epithet^Thing structures. This is demonstrated by their inability to be intensified *a very frying fish, *a very visiting fleet. (Cf a very good race, a very difficult group etc.).Unlike Epithets, Classifiers do not accept degrees of intensity (Halliday & Matthiessen (2004: 320).