Linguistic categories explaining how words are used. Examples are the verb, the noun, the pronoun, the adjective, the adverb, the preposition, the conjunction, and the interjection.

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110
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19answers
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Is “women men girls love meet die” a valid sentence?

Is "women men girls love meet die" a valid sentence? If so, what does it mean? The sentence shows up in academic papers about the "Sausage Machine" for natural language processing. (A google will ...
32
votes
6answers
3k views

What is the lexical class of the word 'worth' when used in a sentence like “Is this apple worth $3?”

The question "Not worth the paper it's printed on" - wrong meaning? got me thinking about what part of speech, or lexical class, the word 'worth' takes? A comment in "Is it worth ...
24
votes
2answers
4k views

What part of speech is “down” in “Put your pencils down”?

I need to know what down in this specific sentence means. I don't know if it is a preposition or an adverb.
20
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6answers
3k views

How can I prove a word is a noun?

When I read a sentence, I can identify nouns. But now I need to give proof that they are indeed nouns, and that is where it goes wrong. I can think of one or two things sometimes (like combining it ...
17
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7answers
56k views

Is “yesterday” a noun?

Are words like "yesterday" and "tomorrow" considered nouns, adjectives, or even adverbs? I'm getting mixed signals from several references. In a case like "I have an important meeting tomorrow," it ...
17
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4answers
11k views

What part of speech is “on” in “on fire”?

A while ago, there was an answer on Jeopardy! along the following lines: In the sentence he was on fire, the word on is this part of speech. The judges ruled that it was a preposition. But I ...
15
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6answers
3k views

Is “so” a pronoun?

Reminded by What is the grammatical function of so in this sentence, something that has always bothered me is that the word "so" can be used as a pronoun: It looks like rain Responding with: ...
14
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3answers
1k views

What is the grammatical function of 'Celsius' in “ten degrees Celsius”?

In this sentence: Iron melts at around 770 degrees Celsius, 1,400 degrees Fahrenheit. What is the grammatical function of the words 'Celsius' and 'Fahrenheit' ?
14
votes
4answers
787 views

Grammatical role of “the hell”?

I’m wondering exactly which grammatical role the word hell takes on in expressions such as Get the hell out of here the hell in this case seems to modify the phrasal verb to get out (get out ...
14
votes
2answers
7k views

Word to describe the quality of being optional or mandatory

Something like 'Optionality' or 'Ordinality'? (It's similar in kind to the words "Arity" and "Cardinality") Example: "Fred listed the XXXity of each parameter, noting whether it was optional or ...
13
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2answers
2k views

Is it true that a word ending in -y is more likely to be an adjective than a noun?

Claim: a word ending in -y is most likely not a noun but an adjective. Don't have my tagged corpus handy to check. Anyone have the stats on Parts-Of-Speech of words ending in y and assuming they ...
13
votes
9answers
1k views

Is “times” really a plural noun?

In the question What part of speech are "plus", "times", and "minus", we discover that plus is a preposition, and are left to assume that so is times, in phrases such as ...
13
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4answers
3k views

New Oxford American Dictionary describes “the” as an adjective

When I look at the definition given from the Mac OS X Dictionary (I have set American English as interface language, and the dictionary used is then the New Oxford American Dictionary), I read: ...
13
votes
8answers
733 views

“Cry foul” - is foul a noun?

Is the the word "foul" in the saying "cry foul" a noun, an adjective or an adverb? I had a disagreement with my teacher, where I think it's a noun. As in screaming "Foul!", saying that the action is ...
13
votes
3answers
16k views

Is “of ” necessary in “all of ”?

Listen to all your fans vs Listen to all of  your fans OR Name all the states vs Name all of  the states What part of language is of  in these examples? Is it necessary or ...
12
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7answers
2k views

What part of speech is “telling” in “that would be telling”?

In the phrase "that would be telling", what is the word "telling"? I think it would be either an adjective or a verb, but which is it? Neither seems to be obviously wrong. I think the former would ...
11
votes
5answers
11k views

How many different parts of speech can the f-word be used as?

In an "interesting" thread of comments we began to look at the word fuck in several different uses. Most of them were interjections and verb uses as would be expected. But, perhaps dialectally, the ...
11
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5answers
3k views

What part of speech are non-human “interjections” like “oink” and “bang”?

As a spin-off from this comment: If a human exclaims something like "ouch!", I believe it's considered an interjection. But if a pig exclaims "oink!", what is the part of speech? And if a bell goes ...
11
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4answers
1k views

“Employee” in the phrase “employee ID” is a determiner, not an adjective—right?

I am a software developer with a bit of a linguistic slant. We were recently given some training on how to name database fields and were told to avoid adjectives in names. Then we were given an ...
11
votes
1answer
5k views

What form of verb is “thank” in “thank you”?

Is the word thank in Thank you! a verb? If not, what part of speech is it then? If it is a verb, is it in the imperative mood? I'm asking because I've seen someone write Do thank you! which ...
11
votes
4answers
726 views

Is “now” a “preposition”?

My question starts from this question which asks about difference between currently and right now, which is not that complicated. However, in the middle of exchanging comments, I found a few points ...
10
votes
3answers
829 views

What part-of-speech would a vehicle's year/make/model be?

Suppose I were to say this sentence: "I own a 2003 Ford F-150." Would 2003 Ford F-150 be a compound proper noun? Would Ford F-150 be a compound proper noun and 2003 be an adjective? Would F-150 be ...
10
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1answer
24k views

Yes, no, adverbs, and interjections

There appears to be some disagreement over what function yes and no perform in the following sentences: Yes, you are right. No, you are mistaken. According to ODO (yes, no), they are being used as ...
9
votes
9answers
22k views

What word can fulfill the most parts of speech?

I know there are several parts of speech: Noun Verb Pronoun Adjective Adverb Preposition Conjunction Interjection There might be others as well. Sometimes a word, depending on how it is used, can ...
9
votes
5answers
4k views

Parts of speech and functions: “Bob made a book collector happy the other day”

Having been bamboozled by various questions and answers on this site, I'd like to know what are the parts of speech (POS) and grammatical functions of the words and phrases in the following sentence: ...
9
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4answers
2k views

What part of speech is “worth”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is the lexical class of the word 'worth' when used in a sentence like “Is this apple worth $3?” In a sentence like the following: The ...
9
votes
1answer
963 views

What is the word for using one part of speech where another would be more grammatical?

There's a Greek word that means using the wrong part of speech somewhere in a sentence, as in: I don't know the who or the how or the when. Where "who", "how", and "when" are being used for ...
9
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2answers
1k views

Do all words have a part of speech?

Do all words have a part of speech? The closest counterexample I can think of is yes. The dictionary says its supposed to be an adverb but it doesn't really strike me as something that modifies a ...
9
votes
2answers
5k views

'dynamical' vs. 'dynamic'

The adjective 'dynamical' is widely used in astronomy, perhaps science in general, but it seems like it has the exact same meaning and usage as 'dynamic', and further, seems to be the same part of ...
8
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3answers
1k views

What part of speech is “methinks”?

Dictionaries call this word a verb, but it doesn't seem to behave like any other verb in the English language. Another question on this site calls it a “conjoined pronoun-verb combination”, which ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

More on 'who should she see': what part of speech is 'should' in this phrase?

Prompted by What does 'should' mean in this sentence?, instead of asking what it means, I'm interested in what part of speech it is. The sentence is: She walked through the forest, and who should ...
8
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9answers
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Is “architect” a verb and a noun?

I hear the word architect used as a verb in the technical field and now more often in other industries and groups, for example: We need to architect a better solution to the problem. I am ...
8
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1answer
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Why does Pinker classify these words as prepositions in *The Sense of Style*?

In his recent book, The Sense of Style, Steven Pinker explains permissible uses of commas and writes this sentence And when the writer pinpoints the coherence relation he has in mind with an ...
8
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2answers
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English parts of speech — better new treatments

Can anyone please recommend a better treatment of English parts of speech / word classes than that offered by most traditional grammars? Many of the latter stick with the sacrosanct 8 of antiquity, ...
8
votes
2answers
623 views

How did 'mad' come to be a determiner?

There's a group of words — I think they're called determiners — used to indicate number in some way... like many, few, most, etc. During a linguistics class my professor said this was a closed group ...
7
votes
3answers
765 views

The verb form of “Is entered in the race”

[I'm not much of an expert in English usage, just an armchair boffin, so I hope I'm not out of line asking what may be a dumb question, to the regulars here...] I am trying to figure out the form of ...
7
votes
4answers
15k views

Part of speech for “please” followed by a verb

I know that "please" can be many different parts of speech; interjection, an adverb, or a verb, depending on how it's used. I'm looking specifically to find out what part of speech "please" is when ...
7
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5answers
2k views

“Love me tender”: adverb or adjective?

Is the last word in each of these phrases an adverb or an adjective? How can we know? love me tender treat me nice hold me tight
7
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2answers
2k views

What kind of word is “place” in “take place”?

I'm currently analyzing verbs with Stanford CoreNLP and WordNet. I'm interested in particular in verb meanings. I came across sentences like "The scene takes place on the grass." and I found the verb ...
7
votes
5answers
14k views

What part of speech does “here” have in “I am here”?

What part of speech does here have in the following sentence? I am here. I say that in that sentence, here must be an adverb because: It modifies the verb am by describing where I am. Am is a ...
7
votes
3answers
4k views

What part-of-speech will the new “because” be?

The American Dialect Society has voted because as the Word of the Year owing to its increased use in phrases such as "because happy," "because sad," and "because bored." Since it takes an object, it ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Adverbial form of “timely”

The following sentence seems incorrect to me, because the adjective timely is being used as an adverb: Payments not received timely will be returned and additional interest will be due. That ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Is this noun used as an adjective?

I read this recently in The Economist: At the end of the summit, the French and European officials had claimed a points victory over the Germans by getting them to agree more firmly to a ...
6
votes
7answers
22k views

What part of speech is “there” when used in “There is (blah blah)”?

What part of speech is there in the sentence “There is a book on the table?” Also, while typing it out, another question pops up vis-à-vis punctuation. In my complete first sentence above, I ended it ...
6
votes
3answers
679 views

“There is to be no drinking beer today” What is the status of “no” and “beer” here?

There's no doubting her sincerity. There's no telling what she's done. There's no guessing which way they'll bolt. There's to be no drinking beer today. There's no telling her. The word no is ...
6
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3answers
8k views

The grammatical function of “How”

What is the grammatical function of "how" in this sentence: He told us how to do it.
6
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1answer
264 views

Is “postchoice” a well-used word?

I came upon the word postchoice in the following sentence of Time magazine’s (May 28) article titled “The optimism bias,” dealing with the benefits of positive thinking: According to social ...
6
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1answer
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Adverb vs. direct object [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What exactly is an “adverb”? Consider the following sentences: She went home. He swam yesterday. Are the words "home" and "yesterday" adverbs or direct ...
6
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5answers
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Why is the word “how” considered an adverb, even if the answer is an adjective?

Consider this question and its related answer: Question: How was the pizza? Answer: It was delicious. The question is asking how, which is defined in every dictionary as an ...
5
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3answers
2k views

Can adverbs be also direct objects?

"The irate customer asked for the chef." The irate customer asked something. (Noun phrase?) Since you can fill in something in place of 'for the chef,' does that mean it is a direct object and an ...