You are on page 1of 47

People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria

Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research
Teacher Training School of Constantine

Distance Training for Middle School Teachers

Specialty: English (LMD)
Module: Syntax
Prepared by: Soraya Mezhoud
Academic Year: 2007- 2008

Lesson One

The Parts of Speech

Traditional grammar classifies words based on eight parts of speech: the
verb, the noun, the pronoun, the adjective, the adverb, the preposition,
the conjunction, and the interjection.

Each part of speech explains not what the word is, but how the word is
used. In fact, the same word can be a noun in one sentence and a verb or
adjective in the next. The next few examples show how a word's part of
speech can change from one sentence to the next.

Books are made of ink, paper, and glue.

In this sentence, "books" is a noun, the subject of the sentence.

Deborah waits patiently while Bridget books the tickets.

Here "books" is a verb, and its subject is "Bridget."

We walk down the street.

In this sentence, "walk" is a verb, and its subject is the pronoun "we".

The mail carrier stood on the walk.

In this example, "walk" is a noun, which is part of a prepositional phrase
describing where the mail carrier stood.

The town decided to build a new jail.

Here "jail" is a noun, which is the object of the infinitive phrase "to

The sheriff told us that if we did not leave town immediately he
would jail us.

Here "jail" is part of the compound verb "would jail."

They heard high pitched cries in the middle of the night.

In this sentence, "cries" is a noun acting as the direct object of the verb

The baby cries all night long and all day long.

But here "cries" is a verb that describes the actions of the subject of the
sentence, the baby.

Word categories



1.1. An overview of nouns
A noun: any word which names a person, place, thing, idea, animal,
quality, or action.

1. Count Nouns: anything which can be counted; singular and
Example: car - cars
2. Mass Nouns: entities which cannot be counted; they have no
plural form.
Example: money
3. Collective Nouns: groups of people or things; sing. and plural.
Example: herd - herds
4. Possessive Nouns: express ownership by adding an apostrophe.
Examples: (singular.) Kelly's anger (plural.) birds' feathers

1.2. An overview of pronouns
A pronoun: a word which takes the place of a noun (called "the

1. Personal: they refer to person/people speaking, spoken to or
spoken about.
Examples: I, me, you, he, him, she, her, it, we, us, they .
2. Possessive: they function independently; they show possession.
Examples: my, mine, your, yours, our, ours, his, her, hers .

3. Indefinite: they have no specific antecedents.
Examples: another, both, everything, nothing
4. Reflexive: they show that the subject performs actions to/for
Examples: myself, yourself, itself, ourselves, themselves
5. Intensive: they refer back to a noun/pronoun to add emphasis to
Examples: (same forms as reflexive pronouns)
6. Reciprocal: they show a mutual action or relationship
Examples: each other, one another
7. Interrogative: they are used to ask a question
Examples: who, which, what
8. Relative: they are used to introduce a relative clause
Examples: who, which, that
9. Demonstrative: they substitute for specific nouns
Examples: this, that, these, those

1.3. An overview of verbs
A verb: expresses action or state of being

1. Transitive: it is an action verb; it passes action on to a direct
Example: We bought a car.
2. Intransitive: it does not indicate a transfer of action; it does not
require a direct object
Example: The eagle soared.

3. Linking: it joins the subject with a word that renames/describes
Example: The sky is blue.
4. Main: it indicates the primary activity
5. Auxiliary: "helps" the main verb
6. Modal: indicates ability, obligation, permission, possibility
Examples: can, may, must, should, could, might, ought, would
7. Finite: it describes a definite and limited action or condition
8. Non-finite/Verbal: shows an unfinished action or condition
o Infinitives: to + verb; act as nouns, adjectives, adverbs
o Participles: past or present; always act as adjectives
o Gerunds: present participle form; act as nouns

1.4. An overview of adjectives
An adjective: modifies nouns and pronouns

1. Descriptive: it names a quality of the noun
o Attributive: Eg. The brown cow.
o Predicate: Eg. It was a brown cow.
2. Limiting: it limits a noun
o Definite/Indefinite Articles: Eg. the, a, an
o Possessive: Eg. his, her, its, their
o Demonstrative: Eg. this, that, these, those
o Indefinite: Eg. several, few, less, many, more
o Interrogative: Eg. what, which, whose
o Cardinal: Eg. one, two, four

o Ordinal: Eg. third, fourth, fiftieth
o Nouns: Eg. the milk cow
o Proper: Eg. the German cow

1.5. An overview of adverbs
An adverb: modifies verbs, adjectives, adverbs, sentences

Examples: sang loudly, ran swiftly

1.6. An overview of prepositions
A preposition: links a noun or a pronoun (the object of the preposition)
with some other word or expression.
Examples: about, below, in, over, until

1.7. An overview of conjunctions

A conjunction : links sentence elements, ie. words, phrases, clauses

1. Coordinating : it joins sentence parts of equal grammatical
Examples: and, but, for, nor, or, so, yet
2. Correlative: they are coordinating conjunctions that work in
pairs; they join words, phrases, clauses, sentences.
Examples: both...and, either...or, neither...nor
3. Subordinating: they connect clauses of unequal status

Examples: after, because, that, though

1.8. An overview of interjections
An interjection is an unusual kind of word, because it often stands alone.
Interjections are words which express emotion or surprise, and they are
usually followed by exclamation marks.
Examples: Ouch!, Hello!, Hurray!, Oh no!, Ha! yuk, ouch, eh .

Identify the part of speech of the underlined word in each of the
following sentences:

1. The clown chased a dog around the ring and then fell flat on her
2. The geese indolently waddled across the intersection.
3. Yikes! I'm late for class.
4. Bruno's shabby thesaurus tumbled out of the book bag when the
bus suddenly pulled out into traffic.
5. Mr. Frederick angrily stamped out the fire that the local
hooligans had started on his verandah.
6. Later that summer, she asked herself, "What was I thinking of?"
7. She thought that the twenty zucchini plants would not be enough
so she planted another ten.
8. Although she gave hundreds of zucchini away, the enormous
mound left over frightened her.
9. Everywhere she went, she talked about the prolific veggies.

10. The manager confidently made his presentation to the board of
11. Frankenstein is the name of the scientist, not the monster.

12. Her greatest fear is that the world will end before she finds a
comfortable pair of panty-hose.
13. That suitcase is hers.
14. Everyone in the room cheered when the announcement was
15. The sun was shining as we set out for our first winter camping
16. Small children often insist that they can do it by themselves.
17. Dust covered every surface in the locked bedroom.
18. The census taker knocked loudly on all the doors but nobody
was home.
19. They wondered if there truly was honour among thieves.
20. Exciting new products and effective marketing strategies will
guarantee the company's success.

2. Word functions

Words can perform the following functions:

2.1. Subject and Predicate

Every complete sentence contains two parts: a subject and a predicate.
The subject is what (or whom) the sentence is about, while the predicate
tells something about the subject. In the following sentences, the
predicate is enclosed in braces ({ }), while the subject is highlighted.

Judy {runs}.
Judy and her dog {run on the beach every morning}.

To determine the subject of a sentence, first isolate the verb and then
make a question by placing "who?" or "what?" before it -- the answer is
the subject.

The audience littered the theatre floor with torn wrappings and
spilled popcorn.

The verb in the above sentence is "littered." Who or what littered? The
audience did. "The audience" is the subject of the sentence. The
predicate (which always includes the verb) goes on to relate something
about the subject: what about the audience? It "littered the theatre floor
with torn wrappings and spilled popcorn."

Unusual Sentences

Imperative sentences (sentences that give a command or an order) differ
from conventional sentences in that their subject, which is always "you,"
is understood rather than expressed.

Stand on your head. ("You" is understood before "stand.")

Be careful with sentences that begin with "there" plus a form of the verb
"to be." In such sentences, "there" is not the subject; it merely signals
that the true subject will soon follow.

There were three stray kittens cowering under our porch steps
this morning.

If you ask who? or what? before the verb ("were cowering"), the answer
is "three stray kittens," the correct subject.

2.2. Objects

A verb may be followed by an object that completes the verb's meaning.
Two kinds of objects follow verbs: direct objects and indirect objects. To
determine if a verb has a direct object, isolate the verb and make it into
a question by placing "whom?" or "what?" after it. The answer, if there
is one, is the direct object:

Direct Object
The advertising executive drove a flashy red Porsche.
Direct Object
Her secret admirer gave her a bouquet of flowers.

The second sentence above also contains an indirect object. An indirect
object (which, like a direct object, is always a noun or pronoun) is, in a
sense, the recipient of the direct object. To determine if a verb has an

indirect object, isolate the verb and ask to whom?, to what?, for whom?,
or for what? after it. The answer is the indirect object.

Not all verbs are followed by objects. Consider the verbs in the
following sentences:

The guest speaker rose from her chair to protest.
After work, Randy usually jogs around the canal.

Transitive and Intransitive Verbs

Verbs that take objects are known as transitive verbs. Verbs not
followed by objects are called intransitive verbs.

Some verbs can be either transitive verbs or intransitive verbs,
depending on the context:

Direct Object
I hope the Senators win the next game.
No Direct Object
Did we win?

2.3. Complements

Subject Complements

In addition to the transitive verb and the intransitive verb, there is a third
kind of verb called a linking verb. The word (or phrase) which follows a
linking verb is called not an object, but a subject complement.

The most common linking verb is "be." Other linking verbs are
"become," "seem," "appear," "feel," "grow," "look," "smell," "taste," and
"sound," among others. Note that some of these are sometimes linking
verbs, sometimes transitive verbs, or sometimes intransitive verbs,
depending on how you use them:

Linking verb with subject complement
He was a radiologist before he became a full-time yoga
Linking verb with subject complement
Your homemade chili smells delicious.
Transitive verb with direct object
I can't smell anything with this terrible cold.
Intransitive verb with no object
The interior of the beautiful new Buick smells strongly of fish.

Note that a subject complement can be either a noun ("radiologist",
"instructor") or an adjective ("delicious").

Object Complements

An object complement is similar to a subject complement, except that
(obviously) it modifies an object rather than a subject. Consider this
example of a subject complement:

The driver seems tired.

In this case, as explained above, the adjective "tired" modifies the noun
"driver," which is the subject of the sentence.

Sometimes, however, the noun will be the object, as in the following

I consider the driver tired.

In this case, the noun "driver" is the direct object of the verb "consider,"
but the adjective "tired" is still acting as its complement.

In general, verbs which have to do with perceiving, judging, or changing
something can cause their direct objects to take an object complement:

Paint it black.
The judge ruled her out of order.
I saw the Prime Minister sleeping.

In every case, you could reconstruct the last part of the sentence into a
sentence of its own using a subject complement: "it is black," "she is out
of order," "the Prime Minister is sleeping."

2.4. Apposition

When two words, clauses, or phrases stand close together and share the
same part of the sentence, they are in apposition and are called

In fact, an appositive is very much like a subject complement, only
without the linking verb:

subject complement
My brother is a research associate.
My brother the research associate works at a large polling firm.
subject complement
Jean became a magistrate.
I have never met Jean the magistrate.

2.5. An Adjective

An adjective modifies a noun or a pronoun by describing, identifying, or
quantifying words. An adjective usually precedes the noun or the
pronoun which it modifies.

2.6. An Adverb

An adverb can modify a verb, an adjective, another adverb, a phrase, or
a clause. An adverb indicates manner, time, place, cause, or degree and
answers questions such as "how," "when," "where," "how much".

While some adverbs can be identified by their characteristic "ly" suffix,
most of them must be identified by untangling the grammatical
relationships within the sentence or clause as a whole. Unlike an
adjective, an adverb can be found in various places within the sentence.

Exercise 1: Divide each of the following sentences into its constituent
parts of speech and label each part:

1- Mary meticulously cleaned her room.

2- The girl is now a student at a large university.

3- His brother grew happier gradually.

4- It rained steadily all day.

5- He had given the girl an apple.

6- He gave me his phone number but I lost it.

7- They chose a dark brown paint.

8- They made him chairman every year.

9- The dancer moved gracefully.

10-The day was completely enjoyable.

6- A hot infusion of mint will stop your stomach-ache.
8- He gave me a handful of peanuts, a glass of tea and two cakes.
10- The mother looked at her children with pride.

Exercise 2: Look carefully at the word ‘round’ and classify it in a
accordance with its use in the following sentences.
1- We meet him in any round table we do.
2- We went round by the bridge.
3- I was thinking, sitting round the fire.
4- He was speaking in rich round tones.
5- The sound went round and round.
Exercise 3: Lengthen the following sentences by adding different words
1- The elephant eats grass.
2- He lost his watch.
3- They write a letter.
4- They offered me a present.
5- We are human beings.

Lesson Two
A noun tells us what someone or something is called. It can be the name
of a person (John), a job title (physician), the name of a thing (ring), of
a place (London), of a quality (patience), of an action
(laughter/laughing). They are names we give to people, things, places,
etc. to identify them. Many nouns are used after a determiner, e.g. a, the,
this and often combine with other words to form a noun phrase: e.g. the
man, the man next door, that tall building. Nouns and noun phrases
answer the question who? and what? and may be:
-The subject of a verb
Our agent in Cairo sent a telex this morning.
- The direct object of a verb:
Frank sent an urgent telex from Cairo this morning.
- The indirect object of a verb:
Frank sent his boss a telex.
- The object of a preposition:
I read about it in the paper.
- The complement of be or a related verb like seem:
Jane is our guest.
- used 'in apposition':
Laura Myers, a BBC reporter, asked for an interview.
- used when we speak directly to somebody:

Caroline, shut that window, will you please?

Nouns can be classified into proper nouns and common nouns:
I – Proper nouns:
A proper noun is used for a particular place, thing or idea which is
unique. It is generally spelt with a capital letter. Articles are not usually
used in front of proper nouns. Proper nouns include, for example:
- Personal names (with or without titles): Andrew, Andrew Smith, Mr.
Andrew Smith, President Kennedy.
- Forms of address: Mum, Dad, Auntie, Uncle Fred.
- Geographical names: Asia, India, Wisconsin.
- Place names: Madison Avenue, Regent Street.
- Months, days of the week, festivals and seasons: April, Monday, Easter,
Christmas. (Seasons are usually spelt with a small letter but sometimes
with a capital: spring or Spring.

II. Common nouns: Any noun which is not the name of a particular
person, place, thing or idea is a common noun. We can use a/an, the or
the zero article in front of common nouns.

 Countable and uncountable nouns
The distinction between countable and uncountable nouns is
fundamental in English because only by distinguishing between the two
can we understand when to use singular or plural forms and when to use

the definite, indefinite and zero articles: a/an, the and ∅, or the
appropriate quantifier: a few, much, many, etc.
1- Countable nouns: they are sometimes known as unit or count nouns.
If a noun is countable:
- we can use a/an in front of it: a book, an envelope.
- it has a plural and can be used in the question How many?:
How many stamps/envelopes? – Four stamps/envelopes.
- we can use numbers: one stamp, two stamps.
2- Uncountable nouns: they are sometimes known as mass or non-count
nouns. If a noun is uncountable:
• we do not normally use a/an in front of it: sugar is expensive.
• it does not normally have a plural and it can be used in the
question How much? How much meat /oil? - A lot of
meat/ A little oil.
• we cannot normally use a number (one, two) in front of it.
Sometimes a noun is used uncountably when we are talking about the
whole substance or idea, but countably when we are talking about:
• Recognized containers for things. Compare:
I prefer tea to coffee. and Three teas (=cups of tea),
• A type, brand of things. Compare:
and There were dozens of cheeses (= kinds of
cheese) to choose from.
• A particular example of a physical or concrete thing. Compare:

She has blond hair. and There is a hair In
my soup.
Concrete and abstract nouns
Many countable nouns are concrete (having an individual physical
existence), for example:
Persons, animals, plants: a girl, a horse, a tree
Objects: a bottle, a desk, a typewriter.
Groups: an army, a crowd, a herd.
Units of measurement: a franc, a kilo, a metre.
Parts of a mass: a bit, a packet, a piece, a slice

Concrete uncountable nouns (sometimes having physical but not
'individual' existence) include words like:
Material, liquid, gases: cotton, milk, air.
Grains and powder: barley, rice, dust, flour.
Activities: camping, drinking, eating, sailing.
Languages: Arabic, Italian, Japanese, Turkish.

A few countable nouns are abstract: e.g. a hope, an idea, a nuisance, a
remark, a situation. An abstract noun refers to an idea/ a concept which
exists only in our minds. A number of abstract nouns can be used only as
countables: e.g. a denial, a proposal, a scheme, a statement. Many
uncountable nouns are abstract: e.g. anger, equality, honesty.

Compound nouns
Many nouns in English are formed from two parts (classroom) or, less
commonly, three or more (son-in-law, stick-in-the-mud). Sometimes,
compounds are spelled with a hyphen, sometimes not. They are usually
pronounced with the stress on the first syllable, but there are exceptions.
Single-word compound nouns:
There are many words which we no longer think of as compounds at all,
even though they are clearly made up of two words:
a 'cupboard, a 'raincoat, a 'saucepan, the 'seaside, a 'typewriter
Nouns formed with adjective + noun:
a 'greenhouse, a 'heavyweight, 'longhand, a 'redhead
Nouns formed with gerund + noun:
'drinking water, a 'frying pan, a 'walking stick
Here, the meaning is 'something that is used for doing something': e.g. a
frying pan (= a pan that is used for frying)
Nouns formed with noun + gerund
'horse-riding, 'sight-seeing, 'sunbathing
Here, the meaning is 'the action of…': horse-riding (= the action of
riding a horse).
Nouns formed with adverb particles
These compound nouns are combinations of verbs and adverb particles:
e.g. 'breakdown, 'income, 'make-up.
Nouns formed with noun + noun

When two nouns are used together to form a compound noun, the first
noun (noun modifier) usually functions like an adjective and is nearly
always in the singular. This is the largest category of compound nouns.
A 'car key, a 'chair leg, a 'kitchen sink,
'London 'Airport, 'Moscow 'Stadium
Baker street, 'Canterbury 'Road
A 'Ford 'car, an 'IBM com'puter, 'Longman 'Books, 'Shell 'Oil

 Plurals
The plural of a noun is usually made by adding 's' to the singular:
day, days dog, dogs house, houses
's' is pronounced /s/ after a p, k or f sound. Otherwise, it is pronounced
When 's' is placed after ce, ge, se or ze an extra syllable /iz/ is added to
the spoken word.

Other plural forms
- Nouns ending in o or ch, sh, ss or x form their plural by adding es:
tomato, tomatoes brush, brushes box, boxes
church, churches kiss, kisses
But words of foreign origin or abbreviated words ending in o add s only:
dynamo, dynamos kimono, kimonos piano, pianos
kilo, kilos photo, photos soprano,

-- Nouns ending in y following a consonant form their plural by dropping
the y and adding ies:
baby, babies country, countries fly, flies lady, ladies
Nouns ending in y following a vowel form their plural by adding s:
boy, boys day, days donkey, donkeys guy,

- Twelve nouns ending in f or fe drop the f or fe and add ves. These
nouns are calf, half, knife, leaf, life, loaf, self, sheaf, shelf, thief, wife,
loaf, loaves wife, wives wolf, wolves etc.
The nouns hoof, scarf, and warf take either s or ves in the plural:
hoofs or hooves scarfs or scarves wharfs or wharves

- A few nouns form their plurals by a vowel change:
Foot, feet louse, lice mouse, mice woman,
Goose, geese man, men tooth, teeth
The plurals of child and ox are children and oxen

- Collective nouns, crew, family, team, government, staff firm committee
etc., can take a singular or plural verb; singular if we consider the word
to mean a single group or unit:
Our team is the best
or plural if we take it to mean a number of individuals:
Our team are wearing their new shirts.

− Certain verbs are always plural and take a plural verb:
Clothes police
Garments consisting of two parts:
Breeches pants pyjamas trousers etc.
and tools and instruments consisting of two parts:
binoculars pliers scissors spectacles
glasses scales shears etc

− A number of words ending in ics, acoustics, athletics, ethics, hysterics,
mathematics, physics, politics etc., which are plural in form, normally
take a plural verb:
His mathematics are weak.
But names of sciences can sometimes be considered singular:
Mathematics is an exact science.

− Words plural in form but singular in meaning include news:
The news is good.
certain diseases:
measles, rickets, shingles

and certain games:
darts dominoes draughts bowls

- Some words which retain their Greek or Latin forms make their plurals
according to the rules of Greek or Latin:
crisis, crises /'kraisis/, /'krais:z/ phenomenon, phenomena
erratum, errata radius, radii
memorandum, memoranda terminus, termini
oasis, oases

Plural of compound nouns
• Normally the last word is made plural:
Boy-friends break-ins travel-agents
But when man and woman are prefixed, both parts are made plural:
Men drivers women drivers
• The first word is made plural with compounds formed of verbs + er
nouns + adverbs:
Hangers-on lookers-on runners-up
and with compounds composed of noun + preposition + noun:
sisters-in-law wards of court

Nouns and the possessive case
• 's is used with singular nouns and plural nouns not ending in s:
a man's job the people's choice
men's work the crew's quarters
a woman's intuition the horse's mouth
the butcher's shop the bull's horns
a child's voice women's clothes

the children's room Russia's exports
• A simple apostrophe (') is used with plural nouns ending in s:
A girls' school the students' hostel
The eagles' nest the smiths' car
• Names ending in s can take 's or the apostrophe alone:
Mr. Jones's (or Mr. Jones' house) Yeats's (or Yeats' ) poems

• With compounds, the last word takes the 's:
My brother-in-law's guitar
Names consisting of several words are treated similarly:
Henry the Eighth's wives the Prince of Wales's helicopter

Use of the possessive case and of + noun
A. The possessive case is chiefly used for people, countries or animals
as shown above. It can also be used :
• Of ships and boats: the ship's bell, the yacht's mast
• Of planes, trains, cars and other vehicles, though here the of
construction is safer:
A glider's wings or the wings of a glider
The train's heating system or the heating system of the train
• In time expressions:
A week's holiday today's paper tomorrow's weather
In two years' time ten minutes' break two hours'
• With for + noun + sake: for heaven's sake, for goodness' sake.

B. of + noun is used for possession:
• When the possessed noun is followed by a phrase or a clause:
The boys ran about, obeying the direction of a man with a whistle.
I took the advice of a couple I met on the train and I hired a car.
• With inanimate 'possessors', except those listed in A above:
The walls of the town the roof of the church the
keys of the car
However, it is often possible to replace noun X + of + noun Y by noun
Y + noun X in that order:
The town walls the church roof the car
The first noun becomes a sort of adjective and is not made plural:
The roofs of the church = the church roofs .
Unfortunately, noun + of + noun combinations cannot always be
replaced in this way and the student is advised to use of when in doubt.


Exercise 1: Choose from the words bellow to complete each sentence.
Decide if the word should be countable or uncountable. If the word is
countable, add a/an or make it plural as appropriate:

Chicken dislike improvement language life

1- Mary used to keep……….in her garden in her garden until they
started to get out.
2- A score of 40% may not be very good but it is certainly………..on her
last mark.
3- After so many previous…………., it was inevitable that one of his
films would be unpopular.
4- …………is too short to, worry about keeping your house spotlessly
5- I have had ………….of green vegetables ever since I was a child.
6- Our students study both ………….and literature in their English

Exercise 2: Most of these sentences are wrong. Correct them when
1- The government need to impose taxes.
2- Susan is wearing a black jeans.
3- I need to buy a new pyjama.
4- An increase in taxes caused many crisis.
5- Where are you going to put your furniture?
6- Mathematics deal with calculating equations and matrix.
7- Has the police arrived yet?
8- It was a good suggestion.
9- There is sand in my shoes.

Exercise 3: If necessary, correct these sentences. If they are already
correct, put a √.
1- Tony computers have been stolen.
2- When the teacher had called out the girl’s names, they all stepped
3- We had to study Charles Dicken’s early novels at school.
4- I went to the newsagent’s to buy a paper.
5- There were hundreds of bird’s nests in the trees.
6- They are my mother-in-law’s favourite sweets.
7- I took the books to Lewis’ house yesterday.
8- If they had been anyone else’s paintings I wouldn’t have gone to the
9- The worlds airline’s are moving towards a total ban on smoking.
10- The readers letters page in the newspaper is full of complaints about
the article.
11- I met a cousin of the duke of Edinburgh last week.

Exercise 4: ( Compound nouns) What do you call…….?
1- A Shelf for books. A book shelf
2- A train which carries goods.
3- A test to detect drugs.
4- A case for putting pencils in.
5- A film lasting two hours.
6- The pages of a book that list the contents.
7- An expert in robotics.
8- A shop which sells toys.

9- An assay which is four pages long.
10- An issue of human rights.

Exercise 5: When Luis can’t remember the exact name of something in
English he describes it instead. Do you know what he is describing in the
following sections? The answers are compound nouns made from the
following words: (an example is given)
Bargain friend ground hunters language
mother package pedestrian pen precinct sign
staff tongue tour

1-‘John works for an airline. He doesn’t fly, but he’s one of the people
who work in the airport building.’ Ground staff.
2- ‘He works in town in that area where there are shops, but no cars or
buses are allowed to go’.
3- ‘During the sales in the shops, there are a lot of people looking to buy
things at low prices’
4- ‘It is someone I often exchange letters with, but I have never met.’
5- ‘We’re going on a holiday arranged by a travel company. It includes
accommodation, flights, and so on’.
6- ‘Portuguese is the first language I learned when I was a baby.’
7- ‘My friend can’t talk. He uses hand and body movements to show
what he means’.

Lesson Three

A pronoun can replace a noun or another pronoun. You use pronouns
like "he," "which," "none," and "you" to make your sentences less
cumbersome and less repetitive.

Grammarians classify pronouns into several types, including the
personal pronoun, the demonstrative pronoun, the interrogative pronoun,
the indefinite pronoun, the relative pronoun, the reflexive pronoun, and
the intensive pronoun.

Form of personal/reflexive pronouns and possessives:

Personal Possessi Reflexive
pronouns ves Pronouns
Subject Adjectives
Object Pronouns
I Me My Mine Myself
You you Your Yours Yourself
He Him His His Himself
Singular She Her Her Hers Herself
It It Its - Itself
one one (one's) - oneself

We Us Our Ours Ourselves
Plural You You Your Yours Yourselves
they them their theirs Themselves

1. Personal Pronouns

A personal pronoun refers to a specific person or thing and changes its
form to indicate person, number, gender, and case.

a. Subjective Personal Pronouns

A subjective personal pronoun indicates that the pronoun is acting as
the subject of the sentence. The subjective personal pronouns are "I,"
"you," "she," "he," "it," "we," "you," "they."

In the following sentences, each of the highlighted words is a subjective
personal pronoun and acts as the subject of the sentence:

I was glad to find the bus pass in the bottom of the green
You are surely the strangest child I have ever met.

He stole the selkie's skin and forced her to live with him.
When she was a young woman, she earned her living as a coal
After many years, they returned to their homeland.
We will meet at the library at 3:30 p.m.
It is on the counter.
Are you the delegates from Malagawatch?

b. Objective Personal Pronouns

An objective personal pronoun indicates that the pronoun is acting as
an object of a verb, compound verb, preposition, or infinitive phrase.
The objective personal pronouns are: "me," "you," "her," "him," "it,"
"us," "you," and "them."

In the following sentences, each of the highlighted words is an objective
personal pronoun:

Seamus stole the selkie's skin and forced her to live with him.

The objective personal pronoun "her" is the direct object of the verb
"forced" and the objective personal pronoun "him" is the object of the
preposition "with."

After reading the pamphlet, Judy threw it into the garbage can.

The pronoun "it" is the direct object of the verb "threw".

The agitated assistant stood up and faced the angry delegates and
said, "Our leader will address you in five minutes."

In this sentence, the pronoun "you" is the direct object of the verb

Deborah and Roberta will meet us at the newest café in the

Here the objective personal pronoun "us" is the direct object of the
compound verb "will meet."

Give the list to me.

Here the objective personal pronoun "me" is the object of the preposition

I'm not sure that my contact will talk to you.

Similarly in this example, the objective personal pronoun "you" is the
object of the preposition "to".

Christopher was surprised to see her at the drag races.

Here the objective personal pronoun "her" is the object of the infinitive
phrase "to see."

2. Possessive Personal Pronouns

A possessive pronoun indicates that the pronoun is acting as a marker of
possession and defines who owns a particular object or person. The
possessive personal pronouns are "mine," "yours," "hers," "his," "its,"
"ours," and "theirs." Note that possessive personal pronouns are very
similar to possessive adjectives like "my," "her," and "their."

In each of the following sentences, the highlighted word is a possessive
personal pronoun:

The smallest gift is mine.

Here the possessive pronoun "mine" functions as a subject complement.

This is yours.

Here too the possessive pronoun "yours" functions as a subject

His is on the kitchen counter.

In this example, the possessive pronoun "his" acts as the subject of the

Theirs will be delivered tomorrow.

In this sentence, the possessive pronoun "theirs" is the subject of the

Ours is the green one on the corner.

Here too the possessive pronoun "ours" function as the subject of the

3. Demonstrative Pronouns

A demonstrative pronoun points to and identifies a noun or a pronoun.
"This" and "these" refer to things that are nearby either in space or in
time, while "that" and "those" refer to things that are farther away in
space or time.

The demonstrative pronouns are "this," "that," "these," and "those."
"This" and "that" are used to refer to singular nouns or noun phrases and
"these" and "those" are used to refer to plural nouns and noun phrases.
Note that the demonstrative pronouns are identical to demonstrative
adjectives, though, obviously, you use them differently. It is also
important to note that "that" can also be used as a relative pronoun.

In the following sentences, each of the highlighted words is a
demonstrative pronoun:

This must not continue.

Here "this" is used as the subject of the compound verb "must not

This is puny; that is the tree I want.

In this example "this" is used as subject and refers to something close to
the speaker. The demonstrative pronoun "that" is also a subject but refers
to something farther away from the speaker.

Three customers wanted these.

Here "these" is the direct object of the verb "wanted".

4. Interrogative Pronouns

An interrogative pronoun is used to ask questions. The interrogative
pronouns are "who," "whom," "which," "what" and the compounds
formed with the suffix "ever" ("whoever," "whomever," "whichever,"
and "whatever"). Note that either "which" or "what" can also be used as
an interrogative adjective, and that "who," "whom," or "which" can also
be used as a relative pronoun.

You will find "who," "whom," and occasionally "which" used to refer to
people, and "which" and "what" used to refer to things and to animals.

"Who" acts as the subject of a verb, while "whom" acts as the object of a
verb, preposition, or a verbal.

The highlighted word in each of the following sentences is an
interrogative pronoun:

Which wants to see the dentist first?

"Which" is the subject of the sentence.

Who wrote the novel Rockbound?

Similarly "who" is the subject of the sentence.

Whom do you think we should invite?

In this sentence, "whom" is the object of the verb "invite."

To whom do you wish to speak?

Here the interrogative pronoun "whom " is the object of the preposition

Who will meet the delegates at the train station?

In this sentence, the interrogative pronoun "who" is the subject of the
compound verb "will meet".

To whom did you give the paper?

In this example the interrogative pronoun "whom" is the object of the
preposition "to."

What did she say?

Here the interrogative pronoun "what" is the direct object of the verb

5. Relative Pronouns

You can use a relative pronoun is used to link one phrase or clause to
another phrase or clause. The relative pronouns are "who," "whom,"
"that," and "which." The compounds "whoever," "whomever," and
"whichever" are also relative pronouns.

You can use the relative pronouns "who" and "whoever" to refer to the
subject of a clause or sentence, and "whom" and "whomever" to refer to
the objects of a verb, a verbal or a preposition.

In each of the following sentences, the highlighted word is a relative

You may invite whomever you like to the party.

The relative pronoun "whomever" is the direct object of the compound
verb "may invite".

The candidate who wins the greatest popular vote is not always

In this sentence, the relative pronoun is the subject of the verb "wins"
and introduces the subordinate clause "who wins the greatest popular
vote". This subordinate clause acts as an adjective modifying

In a time of crisis, the manager asks the workers whom she
believes to be the most efficient to arrive an hour earlier than

In this sentence "whom" is the direct object of the verb "believes" and
introduces the subordinate clause "whom she believes to be the most
efficient". This subordinate clause modifies the noun "workers."

Whoever broke the window will have to replace it.

Here "whoever" functions as the subject of the verb "broke".

The crate which was left in the corridor has now been moved
into the storage closet.

In this example "which" acts as the subject of the compound verb "was
left" and introduces the subordinate clause "which was left in the
corridor." The subordinate clause acts as an adjective modifying the
noun "crate."

I will read whichever manuscript arrives first.

Here "whichever" modifies the noun "manuscript" and introduces the
subordinate clause "whichever manuscript arrives first." The subordinate
clause functions as the direct object of the compound verb "will read."

6. Indefinite Pronouns

An indefinite pronoun is a pronoun referring to an identifiable but not
specified person or thing. An indefinite pronoun conveys the idea of all,
any, none, or some.

The most common indefinite pronouns are "all," "another," "any,"
"anybody," "anyone," "anything," "each," "everybody," "everyone,"
"everything," "few," "many," "nobody," "none," "one," "several,"
"some," "somebody," and "someone." Note that some indefinite
pronouns can also be used as indefinite adjectives.

The highlighted words in the following sentences are indefinite

Many were invited to the lunch but only twelve showed up.

Here "many" acts as the subject of the compound verb "were invited".

The office had been searched and everything was thrown onto
the floor.

In this example ,"everything" acts as a subject of the compound verb
"was thrown."

We donated everything we found in the attic to the woman's
shelter garage sale.

In this sentence, "everything" is the direct object of the verb "donated."

Although they looked everywhere for extra copies of the
magazine, they found none.

Here too the indefinite pronoun functions as a direct object: "none" is the
direct object of "found."

Make sure you give everyone a copy of the amended bylaws.

In this example, "everyone" is the indirect object of the verb "give" --
the direct object is the noun phrase "a copy of the amended bylaws."

Give a registration package to each.

Here "each" is the object of the preposition "to."

7. Reflexive Pronouns

You can use a reflexive pronoun to refer back to the subject of the
clause or sentence.

The reflexive pronouns are "myself," "yourself," "herself," "himself,"
"itself," "ourselves," "yourselves," and "themselves." Note each of these
can also act as an intensive pronoun.

Each of the highlighted words in the following sentences is a reflexive

Diabetics give themselves insulin shots several times a day.
The Dean often does the photocopying herself so that the
secretaries can do more important work.
After the party, I asked myself why I had faxed invitations to
everyone in my office building.
Richard usually remembered to send a copy of his e-mail to
Although the landlord promised to paint the apartment, we ended
up doing it ourselves.

8. Intensive Pronouns

An intensive pronoun is a pronoun used to emphasise its antecedent.
Intensive pronouns are identical in form to reflexive pronouns.

The highlighted words in the following sentences are intensive

I myself believe that aliens should abduct my sister.
The Prime Minister himself said that he would lower taxes.
They themselves promised to come to the party even though they
had a final exam at the same time.
Exercise1: Insert interrogative pronouns in the appropriate spaces:
1-….…….is that man over there?
2- ………..umbrella is this? Yours or John's?
3- ………...did you meet at the party?
4- …………did you have to drink?

5- …………of your brothers works in this factory?
6- …………do you prefer, swimming or skiing?

Exercise2: Complete the sentences using reflexive pronouns:
1- They could not go into their house; they had locked………. out.
2- It is not her fault. She really should not blame ………….
3- What a stupid fool I am! I could kill ……….
4- He lives by ……….
5- You ……….heard the explosion very clearly.
6- Could you fetch my bags, please? Fetch them…………

Exercise 3: Combine the following sentences using the appropriate
relative pronoun:
1- The astronauts are expected to land on the moon very soon. They are
reported to be very cheerful.
2- The Thames is now clean enough to swim in. It was polluted for over
a 100 years.
3- Sally Smiles has resigned. Her cosmetics company has been in the
news recently.
4- That person is the manager. I complained to him.
5- These are the cats. I gave milk to these cats.
6- The agency is bankrupt. We bought our tickets from it.
7- The Tower of London is now a tourist attraction. Many people lost
their lives in the Tower of London.

Exercise 4: Complete the following sentences using reciprocal
1- How long have Betty and Mary known ……….?
2- They often give ……….presents.
3- Those two are always copying ……….’s homework.
4- Our children always play by stealing …………toys.
5- Karen an Dave are deeply in love with……………

Exersice5: Answer the following questions using reflexive pronouns:
1-Who told Jane was getting married?
2- Who cut your hair for you?
3- Does Mr. Jones have a secretary to type his letters?
4- Do you want me to post that letter for you?
5- Can you clean the windows for him?

Exercise 6: Complete the sentences with an indefinite pronoun:
1- Does ……….mind if I smoke?
2- Would you like …………to drink?
3- Do live …………near John?
4- There is………….at the door. Can you go and see who it is?
5- We slept in the park because we did not have ………….to stay. We
didn't know ……..we could stay with and we didn't have…………
money for a hotel.
6- Mary is very secretive. She never tells…………, ……………
7- I don't mind what you tell him. Tell him ………… like.
8- It does not matter what time you phone, you can phone at……………