Questions tagged [attributive-nouns]

An attributive noun, also called a noun adjunct, refers to a noun placed before another noun to modify it, like "dog" in "dog catcher" and "dog food", "heart" in "heart surgery", "running" in "running shoes", "employee" in "employee compensation", and "Peter" in "Peter Principle". It is an alternative to a prepositional phrase, like "food for dogs" or "surgery of the heart". You can use a predicate test to distinguish a noun adjunct from an adjective.

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23
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3answers
9k views

“User accounts” or “users account”

Is it correct to say user accounts or users account when referring to the accounts any user has on a site like this one? In general, in the case of a noun that is used as adjective for the noun that ...
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1answer
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When are attributive nouns plural?

Sorry for the title, it is not very evident and intuitive but I really do not how to tell it better... Well, you know, several times, or better, many times, we use this form: If I want to say: "...
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4answers
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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 target ...
10
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1answer
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should a list of tokens be called a “token list” or a “tokens list” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “User accounts” or “users account?” I ask because a list of tasks would usually be called a "task list". However a list or previous winners of a ...
12
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3answers
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Should “two weeks vacation” be written “two weeks’ vacation” with a possessive apostrophe?

I’ve always understood that the phrase two weeks usually turns into two weeks’ when used as a modifier as in I’m giving my two weeks’ notice. I get two weeks’ vacation. (“two weeks’ holiday” for ...
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1answer
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“A mice problem” vs. “a mouse problem”

My friend said to me one day: "We have a mice problem at UNI". Is "a mice problem" grammatical as opposed to "a mouse problem"?
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5answers
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“BookList” or “booksList?” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicates: “User accounts” or “users account?” Is it correct to say “lesson count” or “lessons count”? I'm wondering whether or not I ...
9
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2answers
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A noun adjunct / the possessive case

Sometimes it’s possible to use either a noun adjunct or the possessive case. the shop door the shop’s door However, in certain phrases it’s not OK to do so. the ship’s crew (the ship crew is ...
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3answers
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Plural nouns in nominal compounds

I wonder whether there are rules or guidelines regarding plural nouns in nominal compounds. For example a compound university students list. If there are many lists and many universities is it ...
55
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1answer
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Is there an apostrophe in a master's degree?

The question asks it all really. When referring to a master's degree, do you use an apostrophe or not? That is, is it "a master's" or "a masters"?
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2answers
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Explanation on when the possessive should be used instead of an attributive noun

How would you explain to a person who is learning English, and whose native language does not have attributive nouns, when the possessive should be used instead of an attributive noun? In particular, ...
3
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1answer
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Why do we say a “hotel room” and not a “hotel's room”? [closed]

I would like to know what the rule is to explain why we do not use the genitive construction hotel's room. Instead, we say "a hotel room". Other examples: a hospital bed a bike stand Would it ...
3
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3answers
642 views

Attributive nouns vs. of-genitive

I would be very grateful for some advice on how to decide whether to use an attributive noun or the "of genitive" (periphrastic genitive). It seems to me that an attributive noun is generally ...
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Genitive case or attributive noun

Is there any rule for when it is better to use genitive case or noun as adjective? I'm not sure if there is any difference in meaning in this example: The department of accounting The ...
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4answers
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Which form should be used for at­tribu­tive nouns like “stu­dent union”: sin­gu­lar or plu­ral, or pos­ses­sive sin­gu­lar or pos­ses­sive plu­ral?

When should a noun that’s used at­tribu­tively to de­scribe an­other noun be plu­ral, and when should it be sin­gu­lar? And when should it be pos­ses­sive, like bak­er’s dozen and when should it be ...
3
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0answers
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Is it correct to say “lesson count” or “lessons count”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “user accounts” or “users account”? If I mean "number of lessons", which grammatical construction should I go for? I can imagine three of them: Lesson ...
0
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1answer
790 views

singular/ plural in the attributive [duplicate]

A doll house or a dolls house? Which is correct for the toy? ... There's that thing called Same Sex Couples Act; how about calling it Same Sex Couple Act? The question is - when should I put ...
11
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1answer
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When can a noun be used attributively?

Nouns can modify nouns: cat food, coffee cup, gold ring, laser surgery, flood insurance. It seems to me there are even cases where a noun sounds better than the corresponding adjective: sociology ...
6
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1answer
811 views

Irregular plurals in noun adjuncts

Several psycholinguists1,2 have observed that English speakers do not use regular plurals in compounds, even when the noun refers to more than one instance (dog-catcher, *dogs-catcher), but do use ...
11
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4answers
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“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 ...
5
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3answers
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Where should the apostrophe be placed in “Goats Milk”?

Milk from goats is available in supermarkets. On the shelves of our local store in England, I have found cartons boldly labelled all three of Goats Milk Goat's Milk Goats' Milk Most brands use ...
11
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4answers
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What is the word that denotes the words preceding these nouns?

What word describes/denotes the words that precede vision in the following two words: computer vision and machine vision?
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4answers
796 views

Using apostrophes correctly

I've read a great article about the usage of apostrophes. But there are still some points that are unclear. Why do we say... school project but not school's project? car service but not car's ...
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2answers
279 views

“Car sale” vs “Cars sale”

I have always thought that the latter: Cars sale, is incorrect; yet Google returns almost the same number of results for both! My concern is about Rule extraction and Rules extraction to be precise; ...
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4answers
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Nouns of plural form preceding another noun

I was reading Computers, Communications, and Information A User's Introduction (Seventh Edition) by Sarah E. Hutchinson and Stacey C. Sawyer. The authors consistently used such terms as ...
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4answers
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Can “nuisance” be an adjective?

According to Wiktionary there is a noun nuisance tax. Does this suggest nuisance can be an adjective? Is it?
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3answers
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Is it ok to omit a possessive apostrophe before a capitalized appellation (President, country name, VP, PM)?

In a recent Financial Times article (Yemen PM Escapes Assissnation), the apostrophe necessary to show possession was left out. I've seen colleagues do it as well. Isn't it supposed to be "Yemen's PM ...
3
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1answer
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Plural modifying noun [duplicate]

Where can I learn about the English rules for noun phrases in which a modifying noun is semantically plural? We say "Horse trainer," not "horses trainer", even though there is usually more than one ...
2
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2answers
981 views

“of the” vs noun adjunct [duplicate]

Please note: This may be a complex question, references would be great, search engines do not help with "of the". Looks like we can remove the use of "of the" with a noun adjunct switching the order ...
4
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1answer
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“Attributive Noun” vs “ Compound Noun”

What's the difference between an "attributive and a compound noun"? Some English sites say it's all but thee same and some sites say they're different. Compound : In a compound noun all the words ...
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2answers
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“Employee list” or “employees list” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: User’s Guide vs Users’ Guide should a list of tokens be called a “token list” or a “tokens list” I know we can use list of employees, but I'd like to ...
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1answer
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Thing count or thingS count [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “User accounts” or “users account” Should a list of tokens be called a “token list” or a “tokens list” “BookList” or “booksList?” When there are ...
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1answer
380 views

Nouns vs. nouns used as adjectives [duplicate]

Given the following sentence: You should always use prefixes with your table names Is the word table properly labeled as a noun or an adjective, as it is functioning as an adjective but the base ...
13
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3answers
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Why are nouns sometimes pejorative when used attributively?

Certain nouns can often be used as noun adjuncts in place of a corresponding adjective, with no change in literal meaning, where: The noun is not pejorative when used nominatively by itself. Nor is ...
6
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7answers
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Can a noun work as an adjective, and the adjective as a noun?

Hazel Eyes I found the following paragraph in the guycounseling.com blog article “Hazel Eyes: Learn Why People with Greenish Eye Color are Rare!”, containing the two words “hazel eyes”: Hazel eyes ...
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8answers
88k views

A word used to describe someone who loves to be photographed [closed]

I am trying to figure out if there is a word to describe a person who loves to be photographed.
2
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2answers
5k views

What determines how 'cursed' (as an attributive adjective) is pronounced?

'Cursed' can be pronouced '/kɜːrst/' or '/ˈkɜːrsɪd/'. As far as I am aware, when used as the past tense of the verb 'to curse' it is always the former ('He stubbed his toe and cursed'). When used as ...
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11answers
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One’s love confession vs. One’s confession of love

The following is an extract taken from an Italian student's piece of English homework before I corrected it. Also Mr Amos’s girlfriend, Sabina, arrives to the restaurant, and she assisted to ...
6
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3answers
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Grammatical number of Latin nouns used attributively before other nouns

I read a paper today that kept using "multistrata" to describe an object with multiple layers. For example: I love multistrata cakes. This sounds wrong to my ear, I think "multistratum" sounds ...
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1answer
332 views

“A of B” or “B A” Noun Adjunct vs. Prepositional Phrase

English, having originated as a germanic language, uses premodifier noun adjuncts (is this the right terminology?) to form compound nouns like "science fiction writer". However, English also says "...
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8answers
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Why do we say “Japan earthquake” and not “Japanese earthquake”?

Isn’t earthquake a noun and the preceding word an adjective? Isn’t “Japanese” the adjectival form of “Japan”?
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1answer
314 views

Referring a particular website, should I use the noun adjunct or the genitive/possessive?

I'm wondering if there are any guidelines about using the noun adjunct or the possessive with a website and a company. Should I write: go to the Twitter website or go to Twitter's website? AFAIK ...
3
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3answers
289 views

Does “the motor speed” mean the speed of the motor? [closed]

I'm an engineer and I often hear others say "the motor speed" when they are talking about the speed of the motor. For example, one might ask "What was the motor speed?" when he or she wants to know ...
3
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2answers
812 views

In place names, do the words qualifying the place act as an adjective?

If you have a place name such as “The Sierra Nevada Mountains”, does Sierra Nevada act as an adjective? My guess is yes, since they qualify the noun mountains, e.g.: “Which mountains? The Sierra ...
3
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3answers
338 views

Can/Should an adjective and an attributive noun be used to modify the same noun?

I am writing a scientific thesis and wondering about the heading of one of the major parts. The part gives detailed information on experiments (experimental details) that were performed and ...
0
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2answers
79 views

'The snap election results' or 'The snap-election results'? [closed]

Which of the two is grammatically correct? The snap election results are in. The snap-election results are in. The sentence should refer to the results of an election that was announced suddenly and ...
6
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1answer
570 views

Noun adjuncts, possessive or using “of”

meta: This is my first time on your site. I have been teaching English for longer than I care to mention (native speaker). I am trying to find a way of explaining to some intermediate students why ...
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1answer
82 views

“mammal exhibit” vs. “ mammals exhibit” vs. “mammals' exhibit” [duplicate]

Ok, I'm writing a story where the character visits a museum. Does she visit: the mammal exhibit the mammals exhibit the mammals' exhibit
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3answers
509 views

Can I use the word “hacker” as an adjective?

Can I use the noun hacker as an adjective? For example, can I write or say: It was a hacker trick. so that it means this: It was a trick of a hacker. And can I use It's hacker code. so ...
1
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1answer
154 views

Number of genitive object in a nominal compound [duplicate]

Which of the following options is better? Do the two choices reflect any difference in meaning? "Matters regarding comments deletion" or "Matters regarding comment deletion" --Assuming the ...