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Syntactic Category
A syntactic category is a syntactic unit that theories of syntax assume. Word classes, largely corresponding to traditional parts of speech (e.g. noun, verb, preposition, etc.), are syntactic categories. In phrase structure grammars, the ''phrasal categories'' (e.g. noun phrase, verb phrase, prepositional phrase, etc.) are also syntactic categories. Dependency grammars, however, do not acknowledge phrasal categories (at least not in the traditional sense). Word classes considered as syntactic categories may be called ''lexical categories'', as distinct from phrasal categories. The terminology is somewhat inconsistent between the theoretical models of different linguists. However, many grammars also draw a distinction between ''lexical categories'' (which tend to consist of content words, or phrases headed by them) and ''functional categories'' (which tend to consist of function words or abstract functional elements, or phrases headed by them). The term ''lexical category'' therefore ...
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Syntax
In linguistics, syntax () is the study of how words and morphemes combine to form larger units such as phrases and sentences. Central concerns of syntax include word order, grammatical relations, hierarchical sentence structure ( constituency), agreement, the nature of crosslinguistic variation, and the relationship between form and meaning (semantics). There are numerous approaches to syntax that differ in their central assumptions and goals. Etymology The word ''syntax'' comes from Ancient Greek roots: "coordination", which consists of ''syn'', "together", and ''táxis'', "ordering". Topics The field of syntax contains a number of various topics that a syntactic theory is often designed to handle. The relation between the topics is treated differently in different theories, and some of them may not be considered to be distinct but instead to be derived from one another (i.e. word order can be seen as the result of movement rules derived from grammatical relations). ...
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Adverb
An adverb is a word or an expression that generally modifies a verb, adjective, another adverb, determiner, clause, preposition, or sentence. Adverbs typically express manner, place, time, frequency, degree, level of certainty, etc., answering questions such as ''how'', ''in what way'', ''when'', ''where'', ''to what extent''. This is called the adverbial function and may be performed by single words (adverbs) or by multi-word adverbial phrases and adverbial clauses. Adverbs are traditionally regarded as one of the parts of speech. Modern linguists note that the term "adverb" has come to be used as a kind of "catch-all" category, used to classify words with various types of syntactic behavior, not necessarily having much in common except that they do not fit into any of the other available categories (noun, adjective, preposition, etc.) Functions The English word ''adverb'' derives (through French) from Latin ''adverbium'', from ''ad-'' ("to"), ''verbum'' ("word", "verb"), an ...
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Prepositional Phrase
An adpositional phrase, in linguistics, is a syntactic category that includes ''prepositional phrases'', ''postpositional phrases'', and ''circumpositional phrases''. Adpositional phrases contain an adposition (preposition, postposition, or circumposition) as head and usually a complement such as a noun phrase. Language syntax treats adpositional phrases as units that act as arguments or adjuncts. Prepositional and postpositional phrases differ by the order of the words used. Languages that are primarily head-initial such as English predominantly use prepositional phrases whereas head-final languages predominantly employ postpositional phrases. Many languages have both types, as well as circumpositional phrases. Types There are three types of adpositional phrases: prepositional phrases, postpositional phrases, and circumpositional phrases. Prepositional phrases The underlined phrases in the following sentences are examples of prepositional phrases in English. The prepos ...
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Adverb Phrase
In linguistics, an ''adverbial phrase'' ("AdvP") is a multi-word expression operating adverbially: its syntactic function is to modify other expressions, including verbs, adjectives, adverbs, adverbials, and sentences. Adverbial phrases can be divided into two types: complement adverbs and modifier adverbs. For example, in the sentence ''She sang very well'', the expression ''very well'' is an adverbial phrase, as it modifies the verb ''to sing''. More specifically, the adverbial phrase ''very well'' contains two adverbs, ''very'' and ''well'': while ''well'' modifies the verb to convey information about the manner of singing (for example, ''She sang well'' versus ''She sang badly''), ''very'' is a degree modifier that conveys information about the degree to which the action of singing well was accomplished (for example, ''Not only did she sing well, she sang very well''). Types The following examples illustrate some of the most common types of adverbial phrases. All adverbial phr ...
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Adjective Phrase
An adjective phrase (or adjectival phrase) is a phrase whose head is an adjective. Almost any grammar or syntax textbook or dictionary of linguistics terminology defines the adjective phrase in a similar way, e.g. Kesner Bland (1996:499), Crystal (1996:9), Greenbaum (1996:288ff.), Haegeman and Guéron (1999:70f.), Brinton (2000:172f.), Jurafsky and Martin (2000:362). The adjective can initiate the phrase (e.g. ''fond of steak''), conclude the phrase (e.g. ''very happy''), or appear in a medial position (e.g. ''quite upset about it''). The dependents of the head adjective—i.e. the other words and phrases inside the adjective phrase—are typically adverb or prepositional phrases, but they can also be clauses (e.g. ''louder than you are''). Adjectives and adjective phrases function in two basic ways, attributively or predicatively. An attributive adjective (phrase) precedes the noun of a noun phrase (e.g. ''a very happy'' man). A predicative adjective (phrase) follows a linking verb ...
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Non-finite Verb
A nonfinite verb is a derivative form of a verb unlike finite verbs. Accordingly, nonfinite verb forms are inflected for neither number nor person, and they cannot perform action as the root of an independent clause. In English, nonfinite verbs include infinitives, participles and gerunds. Nonfinite verb forms in some other languages include converbs, gerundives and supines. Formally, nonfinite verb forms lack the three grammatical features ( mood, tense and voice) that are "associated, independently or relatively, with ... the act of predication." Generally, they also lack a subject dependent. One or more nonfinite verbs may be associated with a finite verb in a finite clause: the elements of a verb catena, or verb chain. Because English lacks most inflectional morphology, the finite and the nonfinite forms of a verb may appear the same in a given context. Examples The following sentences each contain one finite verb (underlined) and multiple nonfinite verbs (in bold): ...
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Finite Verb
Traditionally, a finite verb (from la, fīnītus, past participle of to put an end to, bound, limit) is the form "to which number and person appertain", in other words, those inflected for number and person. Verbs were originally said to be ''finite'' if their form limited the possible person and number of the subject. A more recent concept treats a finite verb as any verb that heads a simple declarative sentence. Under that newer articulation, finite verbs often constitute the locus of grammatical information regarding gender, person, number, tense, aspect, mood, and voice. Finite verbs are distinguished from non-finite verbs, such as infinitives, participles, gerunds etc., which generally mark these grammatical categories to a lesser degree or not at all, and which appear below the finite verb in the hierarchy of syntactic structure. Examples The finite verbs are in bold in the following sentences, and the non-finite verbs are underlined: : Verbs appear in almost all senten ...
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Verb
A verb () is a word ( part of speech) that in syntax generally conveys an action (''bring'', ''read'', ''walk'', ''run'', ''learn''), an occurrence (''happen'', ''become''), or a state of being (''be'', ''exist'', ''stand''). In the usual description of English, the basic form, with or without the particle ''to'', is the infinitive. In many languages, verbs are inflected (modified in form) to encode tense, aspect, mood, and voice. A verb may also agree with the person, gender or number of some of its arguments, such as its subject, or object. Verbs have tenses: present, to indicate that an action is being carried out; past, to indicate that an action has been done; future, to indicate that an action will be done. For some examples: * I ''washed'' the car yesterday. * The dog ''ate'' my homework. * John ''studies'' English and French. * Lucy ''enjoys'' listening to music. *Barack Obama ''became'' the President of the United States in 2009. ''(occurrence)'' * Mike Tro ...
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Pronoun
In linguistics and grammar, a pronoun ( abbreviated ) is a word or a group of words that one may substitute for a noun or noun phrase. Pronouns have traditionally been regarded as one of the parts of speech, but some modern theorists would not consider them to form a single class, in view of the variety of functions they perform cross-linguistically. An example of a pronoun is "you", which can be either singular or plural. Subtypes include personal and possessive pronouns, reflexive and reciprocal pronouns, demonstrative pronouns, relative and interrogative pronouns, and indefinite pronouns. The use of pronouns often involves anaphora, where the meaning of the pronoun is dependent on an antecedent. For example, in the sentence ''That poor man looks as if he needs a new coat'', the meaning of the pronoun ''he'' is dependent on its antecedent, ''that poor man''. The name of the adjective that belongs with a "pronoun" is called a "pronominal". A pronominal is also a wor ...
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Grammatical Particle
In grammar, the term ''particle'' ( abbreviated ) has a traditional meaning, as a part of speech that cannot be inflected, and a modern meaning, as a function word associated with another word or phrase, generally in order to impart meaning. Although a particle may have an intrinsic meaning, and indeed may fit into other grammatical categories, the fundamental idea of the particle is to add context to the sentence, expressing a mood or indicating a specific action. In English, for instance, the phrase "oh well" has no purpose in speech other than to convey a mood. The word 'up' would be a particle in the phrase to 'look up' (as in the phrase ''"''look up this topic''"''), implying that one researches something, rather than literally gazing skywards. Many languages use particles, in varying amounts and for varying reasons. In Hindi, for instance, they may be used as honorifics, or to indicate emphasis or negation. In some languages they are more clearly defined, such as Chinese, whic ...
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Noun
A noun () is a word that generally functions as the name of a specific object or set of objects, such as living creatures, places, actions, qualities, states of existence, or ideas.Example nouns for: * Living creatures (including people, alive, dead or imaginary): ''mushrooms, dogs, Afro-Caribbeans, rosebushes, Nelson Mandela, bacteria, Klingons'', etc. * Physical objects: ''hammers, pencils, Earth, guitars, atoms, stones, boots, shadows'', etc. * Places: ''closets, temples, rivers, Antarctica, houses, Grand Canyon, utopia'', etc. * Actions: ''swimming, exercises, diffusions, explosions, flight, electrification, embezzlement'', etc. * Qualities: ''colors, lengths, deafness, weights, roundness, symmetry, warp speed,'' etc. * Mental or physical states of existence: ''jealousy, sleep, heat, joy, stomachache, confusion, mind meld,'' etc. Lexical categories (parts of speech) are defined in terms of the ways in which their members combine with other kinds of expressions. The ...
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Interjection
An interjection is a word or expression that occurs as an utterance on its own and expresses a spontaneous feeling or reaction. It is a diverse category, encompassing many different parts of speech, such as exclamations ''(ouch!'', ''wow!''), curses (''damn!''), greetings (''hey'', ''bye''), response particles (''okay'', ''oh!'', ''m-hm'', '' huh?''), hesitation markers (''uh'', ''er'', ''um''), and other words (''stop'', ''cool''). Due to its diverse nature, the category of interjections partly overlaps with a few other categories like profanities, discourse markers, and fillers. The use and linguistic discussion of interjections can be traced historically through the Greek and Latin Modistae over many centuries. Historical classification Greek and Latin intellectuals as well as the Modistae have contributed to the different perspectives of interjections in language throughout history. The Greeks held that interjections fell into the grammatical category of adverbs. They thought ...
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