Parts of speech
Category of words based on shared grammatical properties in a clause
|Part of Speech||Function||Example Words||Example Sentence(s)||Notes|
|Verb||Identifies an action or state.||(to) be, have, do, like, work, sing, can, must||London is a big city. I like London.||A verb has a subject, which is a noun performing the action. Some verbs also have an object, which receives the action.|
|Noun||Identifies a person, place or thing.||pen, dog, work, music, town, London, teacher, John||New York City is very beautiful.||Proper nouns are a type of noun that refers to something individual. Two proper nouns are New York City and the name Amelia. Proper nouns are capitalized. Other nouns are called common nouns.|
|Adjective||Describes a noun.||good, big, red, interesting||The cat is black and white.|
|Adverb||Describes a verb, adjective or adverb.||quickly, silently, well, badly, very, really||The giraffe eats slowly, but when he is very hungry, he eats really quickly.||Slowly describes the verb eat, very describes the adjective hungry and really describes the adverb quickly.|
|Pronoun||Replaces a noun.||I, you, he, she, some, it||She is very good at playing the piano.|
|Preposition||Links a noun to another word.||to, at, after, on, under||The dog is under the table.|
The man ran over the bridge.
|Under links the noun dog to the noun table.|
Over links the verb ran to the noun bridge.
|Conjunction||Joins clauses, sentences or words.||and, but, when, or||I like apples and oranges, but I don't like grapes.|
|Determiner||Helps refer to a noun.||the, a, an, my, your,this, that||There is a drink on the table. It is my drink.|
|Interjection||Short exclamation.||oh!, ouch!, hi!||Ouch! That really hurt!|
Open and closed classesEdit
Verbs, nouns, adjectives, adverbs, and interjections are called open classes because they are parts of speech that can easily add new words. On the other hand, pronouns, prepositions, and conjunctions are closed classes because new words cannot be added easily. For example, since pronouns are a closed class, there are fairly few pronouns: I, me, my, mine, myself, you, your, yours, yourself, he, him, his, his, himself, she, her, her, hers, herself, it, it, its, its, itself, we, us, our, ours, ourselves, they, them, their, theirs, themselves. Since pronouns are used to replace whole noun phrases, there is no need to have many kinds of pronouns. Instead of saying "The Earl of Sandwich introduced the Earl of Sandwich's favorite food, the sandwich", one uses the pronoun his to replace "the Earl of Sandwich's" to make the sentence not repeat itself when it doesn't have to, thus the sentence becomes "The Earl of Sandwich introduced his favorite food, the sandwich". New nouns, on the other hand, can easily be made, and are constantly being added into the English language.