Parts of Speech

Parts of Speech 

Words are classified into eight categories called parts of speech.  Here are parts of speech as listed in Keys for writers that you should know:

Nouns: Words that name a person, place, thing or concept – teacher, valley, furniture, Hindusim – are called nouns.  When you use a noun, determine the folloing: Is it a proper non, requiring a capital letter? Does it have a plural form? If so are you using the singular or plural form?

Pronouns: Words that are substitutes for a noun, a noun phrase, or another pronoun – She, his, those, themselves, whom, whoever, anyone – are called pronouns.  WHen you use a pronoun, determine the following: What word or words in the sentence does the pronoun refer to? Does the pronoun refer to a noun or pronoun that is singular or plural?

Verbs: Words that tell what a person, place, thing, or concept does or is – smile, throw, think, seem, become, be –  are called verbs, Verbs change form to refer to present or past time. Every clause needs a verb.  When you use a verb, determine the following; What time does the verb refer to? Is the subject of the verb singular or plural? Is the verb in the active voice or passive voice? What are the five forms of the the verb (sing, sings, singing sang, sung), and are you using the correct form?

Adjectives: Word that describe nouns – purple, beautiful, big – Are called adjectives.  An adjective can precede a noun (purple boots) or following a linking verb: Her boots are purple.  

Adverbs: Words that provide information about verbs, adjectives, adverbs, or clauses are called adverbs.  Many but not all adverbs end in – ly, efficiently, undoubtedly.  Adverbs provide information about “how” or “when”: very, well, sometimes, often, soon. Conjunctive adverbs – however, therefore, furthermore – make connections between independent clauses.

Conjunctions: Words that connect single words, phrases, and clauses are called conjunctions. Coordinating conjunctions –and, but, or, nor, so, for, yet– connect ideas of equal importance. Subordinating conjunctions – because, if, when, although, for instance – make one clause dependent on another.

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