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Transcript
The Parts of Speech
iceberg
shed
Noun
vinca
puppy with toy
COMMON NOUNS
PROPER NOUNS
man
town
mountain
human rights
George
Lansing, Illinois
Mount Everest
The US Constitution
Pronoun
Personal pronouns refer to specific persons or
things. They always function as noun equivalents.
*PE RS O NA L PR O N O U NS
Singular: I, me, you, she, her, he, him, it
Plural: we, us, you, they, them
Relative pronouns introduce subordinate clauses
functioning as adjectives (The man who robbed us was never caught). In
addition to introducing the clause, the relative pronoun, in this case
who, points back to a noun or pronoun that the clause modifies (man).
(See 63b.)
REL AT IV E PR O N O U NS
who, whom, whose, which, that
Some textbooks also treat whichever, whoever, whomever, what, and
whatever as relative pronouns. These words introduce noun clauses;
they do not point back to a noun or pronoun. (See 63b.)
Indefinite pronouns refer to nonspecific persons
or things. Most are always singular (everyone, each); some are always
plural (both, many); a few may be singular or plural (see 21e). Most
indefinite pronouns function as noun equivalents (Something is burning),
but some can also function as adjectives (All campers must check in at
the lodge).
I NDE F I N IT E PR O N O U NS
all
another
any
anybody
anyone
anything
both
each
either
everybody
everyone
everything
few
many
neither
nobody
several
none
some
no one
somebody
nothing
someone
one
something*
*Copied from Diana Hacker’s The Bedford Handbook
Verb
Helping Verbs:
* F OR MS O F H AVE , DO , A ND B E
have, has, had
do, does, did
be, am, is, are, was, were, being, been
M ODA LS
can, could, may, might, must, shall, should, will, would
The phrase ought to is often classified as a modal as well.*
Main Verbs:
Action Verbs
throw
catch
kick
think
pause
pursue
speak . . .
and so forth
Linking Verbs
be (am, is, are, was, were,
been, being)
become
remain
It takes a verb to express a thought. The subject, either a noun or a pronoun,
does something or is something. Thus, “Raul kicks the ball.” But one can
also say, “Raul is a man” or “Raul is happy.” The word “kicks” is an action
verb while the word “is” is a linking verb (also called a state-of-being verb).
Adjective
An adjective is a word or a group of words that describes a noun or a
pronoun, which means that it makes a person, place, thing, or idea clearer,
such as when one says that “Duane is a good man.” The word “good”
applies to the noun “man,” and “good man” stands for “Duane.” Adjectives
can be single words or phrases or clauses. Following are a few examples,
with the adjectives indicated in yellow highlight:
In the long run, a good deed is always rewarded.
Just because it tastes sweet, that doesn’t make it healthy.
Singing in a clear voice, she made an excellent impression.
A bird in the hand is worth a dozen in the bush.
The person who gives others their just due is truly happy.
I don’t want to be someone who lets envy get the better of him.
Please notice that in each case the word or group of words in highlight
somehow expands the meaning of the noun or pronoun that is being
modified. And adjective points out some kind of particular quality or
characteristic of the noun or pronoun under discussion. There’s a big
difference between saying, “He’s a tall man,” and saying, “He’s a small
man.” There’s a lot of difference conveyed in these two words.
Adverb
An adverb is a word or group of words that gives additional
information about a verb--or another adverb or adjective. That means that it
makes something about the action or the modification clearer. It can tell
how the action is happening, where it is happening, when it is happening,
why it is happening, under what conditions it is happening, or to what
extent it is happening. When the adverb is modifying another adverb or
adjective, it answers the question how?
Below are examples of adverbs at work. I’ve indicated the adverbs in
yellow highlight or in yellow and then green highlight when they are placed
one right next to the other. An adverb, just as an adjective, can be a single
word, a phrase, or a clause:
The student walks slowly across the parking lot.
He went to school yesterday.
Nobody can always be right.
He was pushed to speak his mind although he didn’t want to do so.
Because John is hungry, he goes to the store.
There is no problem any more since the fine has been paid.
Please notice that the adverb does not express an action; it modifies an
action, making clearer its manner of operation, time of happening, place of
happening, reason for happening, or circumstances in some other way of its
happening.
Preposition
A preposition is a kind of “pointer” word. It links the noun or
pronoun that comes after it to the rest of the clause as either an adjective or
an adverb. The preposition along with its noun or pronoun (as well as any
modifiers of that noun or pronoun if there are any) is called a prepositional
phrase. So therefore every prepositional phrase is working as a modifier,
either as an adjective or as an adverb. I’m including a list of the common
prepositional phrases as copied from The Bedford Handbook:
about
above
across
after
against
along
among
around
as
at
before
behind
below
beside
besides
between
beyond
but
by
concerning
considering
despite
down
during
except
for
from
in
inside
into
like
near
next
of
off
on
onto
opposite
out
outside
over
past
plus
regarding
respecting
round
since
than
through
throughout
till
to
toward
under
underneath
unlike
until
unto
up
upon
with
within
without
And here are a few examples of prepositional phrases working as adjectives
(in yellow highlight) or as adverbs (in green highlight):
The man in that room is pacing across the floor.
The world in which we live is dangerous but exciting.
Nobody wants to live among a tribe of thieves.
The best of everything is sometimes not good for anything.
Conjunction
The conjunction is a word or group of words that “conjoin” two words
or groups of words. So another way of putting it is that the conjunction is a
“joining word” or words. Conjunctions can join exactly equal units, such as
two nouns or two verbs, or they can join unequal units, such as a dependent
clause to an independent clause. The first group of conjunctions that join
equal (parallel units) is called “coordinating conjunctions” while the second
group is called “subordinating conjunctions.” Here are the conjunctions
taken from Diana Hacker’s The Bedford Handbook:
A coordinating conjunction is used
to connect grammatically equal elements. The coordinating conjunctions
are and, but, or, nor, for, so, and yet.
C O OR DI N AT I NG C O N J U N CT I O NS
Poverty is the parent of revolution and crime.
Admire a little ship, but put your cargo in a big one.
In the first sentence, and connects two nouns; in the second, but
connects two independent clauses.
Correlative conjunctions come in
pairs: either . . . or; neither . . . nor; not only . . . but also; whether . . .
or; both . . . and. Like coordinating conjunctions, they connect
grammatically equal elements.
C OR RE LA TI VE C O N J U N CT I O NS
Either Jack Sprat or his wife could eat no fat.
A subordinating conjunction
introduces a subordinate clause and indicates its relation to the rest of
the sentence.
Common subordinating conjunctions
SU B ORD I NA T I NG C O N J U N CT I O NS
after
although
as
as if
because
before
even though
how
if
in order that
rather than
since
so that
than
that
though
unless
until
when
where
whether
while
why
Interjection
Yike!
Gee!
Yay!
And since it doesn’t function within the sentence to convey the meaning of
the sentence, I’ll say no more about the interjection.