7.1 Glossary - Key language concepts
Understanding words used to describe language and grammar will help you to improve your understanding of English more rapidly. This is a glossary of the most important terms used on this course.
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A word or group or words that acts as a subject or object within a sentence.
Noun phrases in subject position:
Noun phrases in object position:
A noun phrase that usually follows a verb to show that it is the receiver of an action. However, in a passive sentence, the object is put before the verb. The object is highlighted in italics below:
The form of a verb that occurs in perfect tenses and in non-finite subordinate clauses to show that something has finished or in passive sentences. In the sentences below, the past participle is in italics:
A phrase which starts with a preposition and contains a noun phrase.
A word used to replace a noun, often to avoid repeating it, e.g. 'he', 'they', 'them' 'it', 'me' etc.
A noun which refers to a particular person, place or thing. Proper nouns must be capitalised. Here are some examples:
Refers to whether language is formal, informal or neutral (can be used in both formal and informal contexts). Here are some examples:
Relative clauses add extra information about somebody or something we have already mentioned. There are two main kinds. Defining relative clauses identify which particular person or object we are talking about:
Non-defining relative clauses do not pick out a smaller set from a larger set, but just add extra information. they are usually separated with commas:
a pronoun that introduces a relative clause: that, which, who, whom, whose, where, when and why. The relative pronouns are marked in italics below: