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Key Parts of Speech

Parts of speech are the categories into which words are ordered. Below, you will find the most common parts of speech and their definitions.


A word used to identify objects, people, places, beings, entities or 'things'.

Examples: cat, table, country, colony, park, planet, beach.

Proper Noun

These are used to identify and to specify particular nouns. Otherwise referred to as words starting with a capital letter.

Examples: India, Jamaica, Karen, Philip, Buckingham Palace, the Eiffel Tower, a Frenchman, an Englishman.


Like a proper noun, a pronoun identifies a specific noun. However, it does so without referring to the noun with a particular name. A pronoun is any of the following:

I, my, myself you, yours, yourself we, our, ourselves he, him, himself she, her, herself they, their, themselves it, its, itself this, that these, those


A word which names a feature or attribute of a noun. Otherwise referred to as a "describing word".

Examples: red, huge, round, scary, grotesque, beautiful, bubbly, warm, dark, wonderful.


A word which plays a key part in a sentence and which describes an action, state or occurrence. Otherwise referred to as a "doing word".

Examples: to fly, to hit, to eat, to become, to develop, to fluctuate, to happen, to arise, to transpire.


An adverb is a word which modifies a verb or adjective.

Most commonly, these are words ending with 'ly'…

Examples: quickly, sorrily, daintily, angrily, terribly, cunningly. Examples of usage: The work was done quickly. The baby's face was terribly red. NB: adverbs are in bold; modified verb/adjectives are underlined.

There are many adverbs, however, that do not end in 'ly' but which still modify verbs and adjectives…

Examples: far, maybe, sometimes, best. Examples of usage: I ran far. I often go to the cinema. I'm trying to work out how to do it best. NB: adverbs are in bold; modified verbs are underlined.


Prepositions are used before or after nouns/pronouns to relate them to something else in the sentence.

Examples: of, with, by, against, on, beside, toward, within, underneath. Examples of usage: There is a person in that chair. I saw a cockerel crowing on the roof. You'll find the ladder leaning against the wall. NB: Propositions are in bold; affected nouns are underlined.

NB: In the examples below, verbs are emboldened, subjects are highlighted in purple, and objects are highlighted in pink. Additionally, prepositions are occasionally italicised. Definition Different v

Definitions Transitive verbs are those which exert an action upon the object. I caught the ball. They asked her. He loves her. Intransitive verbs, on the other hand, describe actions (or states) that

You may have seen this sneaky symbol appear in texts, and maybe you've even used it yourself, but are you using it correctly?! ?! Why the Interrobang?! The Interrobang is used for one of two reasons:

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