Different types of words can be grouped according to what they ‘do’ in their sentence.
Nouns are by far the largest category of words in English. They signify all kinds of physical things both living and inanimate; they also signify imagined things like ‘a ghost’; and ideas or concepts, such as ‘love’, ‘guilt’ or ‘fate’.
Concrete and abstract nouns
Concrete nouns signify things, either in the real or imagined world. It’s usually possible to detect a concrete noun with one of the five senses. Abstract nouns refer to concepts and so cannot be perceived, except as an idea.
Examples of concrete nouns include:
The football lay discarded on the pitch.
The candle glowed in the darkness.
The Liverpool crowd cheered in excitement.
Examples of abstract nouns include:
There was hope in his eyes as he looked up.
Intelligence can be measured in several ways.
He was full of courage as he walked towards the battlefield.
Love is all around but hate hides in the shadows.
Some common nouns are made individual and special by being given a name. These are called proper or naming nouns. They are shown by being given an initial capital letter. People’s names, street addresses, cities, and book titles are all proper nouns, for example:
Ryan had never been to London before; Saturday was going to be his first time.
An adjective is a describing word or phrase that adds qualities to a noun. It normally comes before a noun, or after verbs like ‘am’, ‘is’, ‘was’, ‘appears’ or ‘seems’. For example:
The greedy man counted each shiny coin in his money pile; he rubbed his grubby hands excitedly. He was extremely greedy.
A verb lies at the heart of a sentence. It describes the action or state of the subject; that is, it is the ‘doing’ or ‘being’ part of the sentence. Verbs are used to signify a physical or mental action:
Abigail ran through the field.
Jane tore off the wrapping paper.
Some verbs can also link extra information about their subject to a complement:
The cake was delicious.
Noah appeared unwell.
Adverbs give extra detail about many other words apart from nouns. They can add detail to a verb, to an adjective or even to a whole sentence; and, like adjectives, they can be single words or phrases. This makes them a very useful but quite a difficult category to spot. Commonly, an adverb labels how, when or where something happens (and they often end in ‘–ly’):
The dog growled menacingly.
There were several seagulls squawking nearby.
The seagulls suddenly pounced on the family’s picnic.
The family could hardly move.
It was a very nice day.
Prepositions are short words and phrases that give information about place, time and manner.
She first put it on the table but then hid it under her bed.
He’s coming at 6.
A preposition can also be used at the start and end of a sentence.
Under the windowsill, the cat looked at me with disgust.
After ten o’clock, we went for a well-deserved ice cream.
That’s the table I want you to put it on.
On the stroke of six, he walked away.
You can join sentences, clauses and phrases together using joining words. Some common joining words include ‘and’, ‘but’, ‘so’ and ‘then’. Using these can make your writing flow more easily and let your reader know where you are with your narrative or argument.
Be adventurous with your joining words and aim to use some of the following:
Хейл в шоке отпрянул, поняв, что она не шутит: Сьюзан Флетчер никогда еще до него не дотрагивалась, даже руки не коснулась. Правда, это было не то прикосновение, какое он рисовал в воображении, представляя себе их первый физический контакт, но все же… Хейл долго с изумлением смотрел на нее, затем медленно повернулся и направился к своему терминалу.
Одно ему было абсолютно ясно: распрекрасная Сьюзан Флетчер бьется над чем-то очень важным, и можно поклясться, что это никакая не диагностика.