Week 7: English Grammar so far


Parts of Speech  

 i         Verb                He is ill.                       She left early.               We want to help.

ii         Noun                The dog barked.         Sue won easily.            I love you.

iii         Adjective         He’s very young.         I’ve got a sore knee.     It looks easy.

iv         Adverb            She spoke clearly.      You’re extremely fit.      He works very hard

v         Determinative The dog barked.         I’ve got a sore knee.     We need some milk.

vi         Preposition     He’s in the garden.     It’s from your uncle.       We went to Paris.

vii         Coordinator     We saw Kim and Pat.  Hurry or we’ll be late.     It’s cheap but good.

viii        Subordinator   I know that it’s true.     Ask whether it’s true.     I wonder if it’s true.


For each of the first six of the word classes in [3] there is a corresponding class of phrases whose Head belongs to that class. In the following examples, the phrase is enclosed in brackets and the Head underlined:

[4]       i         Verb phrase                   She [wrote some letters].     He [is still in London].

ii         Noun phrase                   [The new lodgeris here.     [The boss] wants to see [you].

iii         Adjective phrase            It’s getting [rather late].        I’m [glad you could come].

iv         Adverb phrase               I spoke [too soon].              It’s [quite extraordinarilygood.

v         Determinative phrase    I saw [almost everycard.    We’ve [very littlemoney left.

vi         Preposition phrase        They’re [in the garden].       He wrote a book [on sharks].


 Subject and Predicate

A canonical clause consists of a Subject followed by a Predicate. The Predicate is realised by a verb phrase; the Subject is mostly realised by a noun phrase, but there are other possibilities too, most importantly a subordinate clause:

[5]                 Subject                        Predicate

  i         One of his friends     |   called a doctor.                               [noun phrase as Subject]

ii         That he was lying     |   was obvious.                         [subordinate clause as Subject]


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