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Nouns, Pronouns, Verbs, Adjectives, Adverbs, Prepositions, Conjunctions, Interjections

Adjectives describe nouns and Adverbs give more meaning to verbs, as a general rule. Examples of adjectives describing nouns are BLUE moon, GREEN grass, HAPPY child, SAD man. Examples of adverbs giving more meaning to verbs are laughed HEARTILY, sobbed VIOLENTLY, asked PERSISTENTLY, smiled SHYLY.


Although a correct sentence is made up of nouns, pronouns, verbs, and verb phrases, they do not give enough specific information nor do they present interesting sentences. They can be monotonous and repetitive, not at all challenging.

Nouns, pronouns, and verbs make a framework for a sentence but leaves nothing to the imagination for building onto that sentence. As you can see in the following examples:

Cats meow.
Horses trot.
She skates.
Women cook.
She crochets.
They dance.

When you have a skeleton sentence like any of the above sentences, it is usually necessary to add other parts of speech in order to make the meaning more clear.

You can add words to nouns and pronouns that tell what kind, what color, which one, etc. If you wanted to tell about a coat a woman was wearing, you would describe the coat in some way. You might even say that it was a brown coat, a fur coat, a raincoat, depending on the meaning you intended to convey. When you add words to describe nouns and pronouns, you give a clearer picture of what that noun or pronoun is like. Words which add new ideas to nouns and pronouns are called adjectives.

Adjectives not only describe by telling what kind or what color, but it may limit the meaning by telling which coat, whose coat, or the number of coats. For example: you might limit the meaning by saying that coat, John's coat, one coat, or several coats.

When you modify a noun or pronoun, you change the meaning slightly by describing or limiting the meaning to a certain kind or to a certain number.


Example: blue hat (modifier = blue) (Blue modifies the noun hat by restricting its meaning and leaving out all other hats of a different color.)


The words a, an and the are adjectives which point out a particular noun but in English Grammar they are referred to as ARTICLES.

The is a definite article. When you say the book, you mean a certain book.

A and an are indefinite articles. When you say, "I have a book", no specific or particular book is indicated.

Examples below show how adjectives make the meanings of nouns more explicit: (The first word is the adjective. The second word is the noun.)

long road
rusty nail
old violin
good sister
worthy cause
steep hill
rainy morning
rapid driver
essential parts


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An adverb is a word that is added to a verb to modify or expand the meaning of the verb. The prefix ad in the word adverb means to, toward, or in addition to. Adverbs may also modify adjectives or other adverbs. Here we will consider the adverb as a modifier of the verb. Later, we will discover other uses for adverbs.

Adverbs generally answer the following questions:

When? Where? How? In what manner? To what extent or degree?


You must record the transaction now. (Now tells when to set it up. Now modifies the verb record.)

We put the books there. (There tells where it was put. There modifies the verb put.)

She dances gracefully. (Gracefully tells how she dances. Gracefully modifies the verb dance.)

When we say, Peg's Paper is issued weekly, the adverb weekly introduces an additional idea of time. The adverb weekly makes the meaning explicit because we know how often or when the paper is issued.

When we say, ants are everywhere, we have introduced the idea of place, or we tell where the ants are located. As you can see, it is not necessary to name a particular place to show location.

When we say, We walked further into the forest, we have added the idea of extent or the degree to which. The adverbs in the preceeding sentences are called adverbs of time, place, manner, or degree.

Adverbs modify verbs but are not always placed right after the verb. Sometimes the adverb introduces the sentence. Sometimes the adverb is placed in the middle of a verb phrase.


Sometimes, I take a walk in the woods.

WHEN do I take a walk in the woods? Sometimes! Sometimes is an adverb modifying the verb take.

What do I take? (action) I take a walk. When do I take a walk? Sometimes!



Stephen usually leaves the house at eight.

Usually is the adverb modifying the verb leaves. Usually adds meaning to the verb leaves in that it is more clearly understood that Stephen leaves the house at eight but not all the time, although most of the time. It may also be understood that it is his habit to leave at eight.



We added a room to our house recently.

The adverb recently puts a timeline on when the room to the house was added. When was the room added? Recently!



I have always admired him.

Always adds meaning to the verb admired in that it clarifies when I have admired him. It is not something just for today. It is something I have always done. When have I admired him? Always!


See examples below:

When we speak and write, words are used by us to express our thoughts and ideas. The English language has thousands upon thousands of words which fall into eight groups known as parts of speech.

Each group has a special work to do. For example, nouns name a person, place or thing. Words are like tools and tools can be used for certain purposes at different times. You eat a ROLL and you also can ROLL a ball. The first roll is a noun and the second roll is a verb.

The most important fact to remember concerning any word in the English Language is its function; how it is used in a particular sentence.

The same words are often used as different parts of speech. A word may perform a certain function in one sentence and an entirely different function in another sentence. Adjectives are commonly used as nouns, and nouns are often used as adjectives. The same word may function both as an adverb and as a preposition. Almost any type of word may be used as an interjection.


Mr. Biggs is a fast driver. (Fast is an adjective modifying the noun driver.)

Mr. Biggs drives too fast. (Fast is an adverb modifying the verb drives. Drives how? Drives fast!)

I fast one day every week. (Fast is a verb. What do I do? I fast. What is my action? I fast.)


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