Our last post told you how to become a better writer
. Part of writing better is knowing the parts of speech so you select the right words to use. This post will define parts of speech so that you can distinguish between them.
What are Verbs
Verbs are where it all happens. They are the actions in a sentence. "I kicked the ball," "kicked" is the verb. "You are the best," "are" is the verb. Verbs are conjugated to agree with the subject. You would not say, "You is the best." A singular subject should have a singular verb and a plural subject takes a plural verb.
What are Nouns
Nouns are people or things. They perform and receive the actions the verbs represent. Nouns are subjects, meaning they do the verb, or objects, meaning the verb is done to them. "I hit the ball." In this sentence, "I" is the subject and "ball" is the object that I hit.
What are Adjectives and Adverbs
Adjectives and adverbs provide color to a sentence. Adjectives describe nouns and adverbs describe verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. Note this distinction well. In "I hit the red ball hard," "red" is an adjective modifying "ball", and "hard" is an adverb describing how I hit the ball.
What are Pronouns
Pronouns take the place of nouns. Instead of repeating the noun, we use smaller words to represent them. Pronouns can be confusing if it is not clear which noun they replace, so be sure you are clear when using them. "Joe hit the ball. He hit it hard." In this example, "he" is a pronoun replacing "Joe" and "it" replaces "the ball".
What is a Preposition
Prepositions express a relation in space or time between two nouns or pronouns. "By," "with," "before," and "except" are all examples of prepositions.
What is a Conjunction
Use conjunctions to join two sentences, clauses or ideas together. Conjunctions are either coordinating, joining two equal parts of a sentence, or subordinating, separating a dependent clause from a main clause. Coordinating conjunctions include "and," "but," and "or". Examples of subordinating conjunctions are "because", "although", and "unless".
What is an Interjection
Finally, interjections are short exclamations. "Oh", "wow", and "hi" are examples. They have no grammatical connection to the sentence and are more often used in speech and dialogue than in writing.
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