You are on page 1of 5

Words that belong to more than one part of speech

Many words in English can have more than one use, or be more than one part of speech. So we have to analyze how the word works in a particular sentence to know what part of the speech it is. For example, "work" can be a verb and a noun; "but" can be a conjunction and a preposition; "well" can be an adjective, an adverb and an interjection. What its more, many nouns can act as adjectives. In the following table you can see a few examples. Of course there are more examples of this, even for some of the words in the table Actually you can find out if you look in a dictionary that the word but has six ways to be used: verb, noun, adverb, pronoun, preposition and conjunction

Word
Can Can Only Only His His English English Work Work But But Well Well Well Afternoon Afternoon

Part of Speech
Verb Noun Adjective Adverb Pronoun Adjective Noun Adjective Noun Verb Conjunction Preposition Adjective Adverb Interjection Noun Noun acting as adjective

Example
I think I can do it Dont open that can of beans This is my only pen He was only joking That book is his That is his book Can you speak English I am reading an English novel My work is easy I work in London John came but Mary didnt come Everyone came but Mary Are you well? She speaks well Well! Thats expensive! We ate in the afternoon We had afternoon tea

(From: Internet)

Coordinating Conjunctions
Conjunctions are used to join words, phrases or clauses and are also called connectives. This group of words are subdivided into Coordinate and Subordinate Conjunctions. Coordinating Conjunction ( or Coordinate Conjunctions) are words that link other words that are the same part of speech, for example: noun with a noun; an adjective with an adjective. There are only seven coordinating conjunctions: And But Or Nor For Yet So Some people use the mnemonic to remember them. The cat and the dog always eat and sleep together (2 nouns; 2 verbs) After the hike and before dinner, they peeled vegetables and told stories. (2 prepositional phrases; 2 verbs) The young and restless children ran quickly and effortlessly. (2 adjectives; 2 adverbs) The girls sang, and the boys danced. (2 complete ideas) I want to go, but I cant find the time. (2 ideas) You can write a report, or you can make a speech. (2 ideas) I cant finish this dessert, nor* can I drink my coffee. (2 ideas) She couldntt attend school, for she had no money. (2 ideas) He always gets lost, yet he never carries a map. (2 ideas) It rained, so they cancelled the outing. (2 ideas) (From: Practical English Grammar p. 139 and Academic English Grammar p. 65)

Postpositive Adjectives
Adjectives can sometimes be postpositives, they can immediately follow the noun or pronoun they modify. We may have three positions of adjectives. Predicative: This information is useful Attributive: Useful information Postpositive: : Something useful A postpositive adjective (together with any complementation, it may have adjectives with

complementation) can usually be regarded as a reduced relative clause. Something that is useful Compound indefinite pronouns and adverbs ending in: body- one- thing- where, can be modified only postpositively: Anyone (who is) intelligent can do it I want to try on something (that is) larger Were not going anywhere very exciting Of course, adjectives that can occur only attributively are excluded: Something (which is) main Somebody (who is) here Postposition is obligatory for Proper meaning as strictly defined : The city of London (Proper) In several institutionalized expressions (mostly in official designation), the adjective is postpositive The president elect (soon to take the office) Form time immemorial Vice-chancellor (designate) Postmaster general Court martial Body politic Take note that: The person opposite (but: the opposite direction) All of us, me included (but: including me) Adjectives ending in: able- ible, can have postposition when the noun is modified by another adjective in the superlative degree, by only, or by the general ordinals last, next, etc. So we have either attributive position or postposition in: The best possible use - The best use possible The greatest imaginable insult - The greatest insult imaginable The best available person - The best person available The deverbal suffix - able/ible combines with transitives verbs to produce gradable adjectives: of the kind that can be V-ed. Some postpositive adjectives, especially those ending in able/ible, retain the basic meaning they have in attributive position but convey the implication that what they are devoting has only a temporary application. So. the stars visible refers to stars that are visible at a time specified or implied, while the visible stars more aptly refers to a category of stars that can (at appropriate times) be seen. We have a similar distinction between the temporary and the permanent in rivers navigable and navigable rivers

Postposition is usual with the set phrase pure and simple as is answer/truth pure ans simple postposition (in reference to attributive position) is usual for a few adjectives and the four adjectives absert, present, concerned, involved; when they designate "temporary! as opposed to "permanent" attributes: The house ( which is) ablaze is next door to mine The boats ( wich were) afloat were not seen by the bandits. The people ( who were) involved were not found Postposition is used with net and grass when the precise amount are stated: He was paid a fee of $12 gross, on wich he had to pay $4 tax, leaving the sum of $8 net (but:the gross sum was $12. The net sum was $8) (From: A Comprehensive Grammar p. 418-419)

Pre modification of comparatives and superlatives

Objects of prepositions ( noun, verbs and adverbs)


A preposition is a word joined to a noun or its equivalent to make up a qualifying or an adverbial phrase, and to show the relation between its object and the word modified. Besides nouns, prepositions may have as objects: Pronouns_: "Upon _them_ with the lance;" "With _whom_ I traverse earth." Adjectives_: "On _high_ the winds lift up their voices." Adverbs_: "If I live wholly from _within_;" "Had it not been for the sea from _aft_." Phrases_: "Everything came to her from _on high_;" "From _of old_ they had been zealous worshipers." Infinitives_: "The queen now scarce spoke to him save _to convey_ some necessary command for her service." Gerunds_: "They shrink from _inflicting_ what they threaten;" "He is not content with _shining_ on great occasions." Clauses_: "Each soldier eye shall brightly turn To _where thy sky-born glories burn_." (From: English Grammar)