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What part of speech is the part boldfaced in these sentences?

  • Chell the protagonist of Portal is a woman.
  • Ludwig Wittgenstein the Austrian-British philosopher worked primarily in logic.
  • Tim Berners-Lee the inventor of the World Wide Web said "more you enter, the more you become locked in".
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closed as not a real question by KitFox Apr 4 '13 at 0:17

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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Each of the bolded phrases consists of several words. Each of those words is a certain part of speech. (Chell and Portal are (proper) nouns, the is an article, of is a preposition, protagonist is a noun, and so on.) The phrase as a whole is not a part of speech. It is a phrase. More precisely, each of the phrases is a noun phrase, and each of them contains another, parenthetical, phrase. Which should be set off by commas. All three examples are not properly punctuated. –  RegDwigнt Apr 3 '13 at 23:07
    
What is wrong with noun phrase? oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/noun%2Bphrase –  Kris Apr 4 '13 at 6:50
    
@KitFox This may be GR, but there's nothing unreal at all about it. :) –  Kris Apr 4 '13 at 6:55
    
@Kris The unreal part is that the bolded part is not a part of speech, rather it is several. That makes the question ambiguous and vague. –  KitFox Apr 4 '13 at 21:37
    
In contemporary linguistics, the term part of speech has generally been discarded in favor of the label word class or syntactic category. The answer to this question is noun phrase. –  Kris Apr 5 '13 at 6:59

1 Answer 1

Phrases don't really have parts of speech - single words do - but these are all noun phrases formed by the apposition of two smaller noun phrases.

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Why can't we just say thay're noun phrases, which they are? –  Kris Apr 4 '13 at 6:49
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It would then be preferable to clarify that the definition of POS you are using is not the narrower one (eg MW:) : a traditional class of words distinguished according to the kind of idea denoted and the function performed in a sentence ... but the broader one (eg Wikipedia:) In grammar, a part of speech (also a word class, a lexical class, or a lexical category) is a linguistic category of words (or more precisely lexical items), ... Wiktionary lexical item A term—word or a sequence of words—that acts as a unit of meaning, including words, phrases, phrasal verbs and proverbs ... –  Edwin Ashworth Apr 4 '13 at 8:01

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