What part of speech is the word "sleep" in this sentence?

You should have eight hours of sleep each night.

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  • I would say it is an uncountable abstract noun. – WS2 Oct 5 '15 at 19:52
  • Of course, sleep may also be used as a verb. But it's a noun in the above sentence. – Hot Licks Oct 5 '15 at 23:01
  • I would say "of" before "sleep" is a sufficient feature showing that "sleep" is used as a noun. – rogermue Oct 6 '15 at 4:17

WS2 is correct - it is an abstract noun.

sleep noun

  1. dormancy or inactivity

Source: Dictionary.com

The reason why "sleep" (in this context) is abstract and not concrete is because you can't physically touch it.


To answer such a question, you have to start with the whole structure and work your way down to the smaller parts, until you get to "sleep". The subject is "you", the object of "have" is the noun phrase "eight hours of sleep". Within that noun phrase, the complement of the noun "hours" is the prepositional phrase "of sleep". I'll leave the rest to you.

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