English - Parts of the speech

1 - About

The eights parts of speech are the basics foundation of the sentence. Once you understand the components of a sentence, you can make corrections rather than just guessing at why something is wrong.

Words make up the eight parts of speech.

Understanding the grammatical roles these parts of speech play help to make good choices when composing:

  • paragraphs, and
  • multi-paragraph compositions.

3 - Parts of Speech Jobs

The words categorized as the eight parts of speech can do many different “jobs” in the sentences you create. The box below illustrates some of the work these elements can do for you.

Parts of Speech Jobs They Perform in Sentences
Nouns, pronouns Subjects (the actor/who/what) and Objects (receive the action of the actor)
Verbs Verbs (describe the action of the actor)
Adjectives, adverbs, prepositions Modifiers (add details and description)
Conjunctions Conjunctions (link sentences, words)
Interjections Interjections (exclamations)

4 - Words Job

Just as the parts of speech can do various jobs in sentences, words that make up the eight parts of speech can also multitask. In fact, many of the words in the English language can be more than one part of speech, as you already know, and can do a variety of jobs in sentences. Look at the following examples.

Word Part of Speech Sentences
bubbles Noun The bubbles floated up and away.
verb Water bubbles when it begins to boil.
up(s) adverb He climbed up to the top of the ladder.
preposition They went up the stairs.
adjective The up elevator is on the left.
noun She has had more ups than downs lately.
well interjection Well! I don’t believe it!
adverb The teacher spoke well of the student.
adjective My friend is well.
daily noun The daily arrives at 3:00 pm.
adjective Daily attendance is a requirement.
adverb He called her cell phone daily.

5 - Symbol

Part of Speech/Sentence Symbol
Subject S
Verb V
Noun N
Pronoun P
Adjective/determiner ADJ
Adverb ADV
Prepositional Phrase Prep P
Conjunction C
Interjection INT

6 - Part

6.1 - Nouns, Pronouns, and Adjectives

  • Nouns are persons, places, things, living creatures and concept
  • Pronouns are words that stand in for or replace nouns. Pronouns are those words that are going to take the place of a noun. Pronouns will rename nouns in order essentially to reduce repetition (she, he, it, his, her, their, they).
  • Adjective can modify a noun or a pronoun (superlative, …) (two, cold, warm, …). They are words you use to modify a noun or a pronoun.

6.2 - Verbs and Adverbs

  • Verbs indicate an action or a state of being. Verbs show what the subject of a sentence does.
  • Adverbs are going to modify verbs, adjectives, and even other adverbs. Adverbs modify and describe verbs, adjective, and other adverbs.

Without action verbs your prose is going to seem lifeless, it's going to be pretty short and simple.

The seals got out of the water, moved across the deck, and made sounds at the spectators

All those are vague verbs. We can bring more action verbs into this.

The seals leaped out of the water, they slid across the deck, they barked at the

And then we can make it even more engaging, and more energetic, by adding the, the adverbs

The seals leaped eagerly out of the water. They slid quickly across the deck and barked noisily at the spectators.

Verbs and adverbs are modifiers and action verbs, They are really adding strength to your sentences. They're enabling to picture exactly what's going on and these kinds of details really engage the reader.

Adverb Example:

  • The speeding car passed suddenly
  • Her paintings are always imaginative and rarely expensive.

6.3 - Prepositions, Conjunctions, and Interjections

7 - Example

The noun and verb “Seals performed” create a complete sentence.

Now add the adjective the:

The seals performed.
ADJ N V

Add another adjective that describes the color of the seals:

The black seals performed.
ADJ ADJ N V

The verb, performed, doesn’t really describe the actions of the seals. Try a verb that better describes the seals’ actions:

The black seals leaped.
ADJ ADJ N V

Leaped better describes the seals' action. Writing and reading would be rather dull if there weren’t verbs that described action. In fact, sentences sometimes contain multiple descriptive verbs. Look at the following sentence.

The black seals leaped, slid, and barked.
ADJ ADJ N V V C V

Look at how this sentence gains energy and vitality when action verbs are added. (Do note that adding additional verbs also means adding commas and the conjunction and.)

There is one more way you can make this sentence even more dynamic: add adverbs and prepositional phrases to give additional details about the verbs.

The black seals leaped eagerly out of the water, slid quickly upon the deck, and barked noisily at the spectators.
ADJ ADJ N V ADV ADV Prep P V ADV Prep P C V ADV Prep P

Now, add several adjectives. Remember adjectives are words used to add descriptive details to nouns; adjectives can also be inserted in prepositional phrases.

The sleek black seals in
the
pool
leaped eagerly out of the
shimmering
water,
slid quickly upon the
wooden deck
around the pool,
and barked noisily at the
stunned
spectators
in the
half-empty
bleachers.
ADJ ADJ ADJ N Prep P V ADV ADV Prep P V ADV Prep P C V ADV Prep P Prep P

Remember, this sentence began as “Seals performed”.

A sprinkling of action verbs and their attending adverbs, as well as a few adjectives and prepositional phrases turned this sentence into an event. As you begin to experiment with expanding sentences in this way, your writing will become word pictures that readers will be able to visualize.

8 - Documentation / Reference

natural_language/english/part.txt · Last modified: 2017/01/20 17:56 by gerardnico