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Post by Kangas on Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:11 pm

To learn a language apart from learning all grammar rules it is very important to know all groups of words and their functions. This way you will be able to use them correctly within those rules.

Today I'm talking about one of those groups of words, nouns. For this study I used as reference The Australian Curriculum and English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University Press.

  • Noun
    Nouns belong to a classe of words that refer to a physical object (car, pencil, dog, cat), person (Adam, Natasha, Andrew) or an abstract concept (idea, democracy, fact). They can be countable or uncountable. Countable means it can be counted, so it has a singular and plural form (banana/bananas), uncoutable nouns have only one form as they can't be counted (rice).

    Nouns' most important grammatical property regards to their function. If a noun is a major element in a group/phrase, it can function as:

    1. subject
      Example: The accident disrupted traffic.
    2. object
      Example: I prefer coffee.
    3. part of a prepositional phrase
      Example: Our train was very late.

    Grammatical groups
    Nouns can be divided in three major groups.

    1. common nouns: they refer to a person or object, but not a specific one. They can also be abstract.
      Examples: woman, dog, book, love, hate

    2. proper nouns: they're used to name a particular person, event, place, date, etc.
      Examples: Anthony, Sarah, March, Sydney, New Year

    3. pronouns: these words refer directly to the speaker or addressee, or to a group of phrase mentioned previously in the sentence.
      Examples: I, you, they, she, he


Sources: The Australian Curriculum, English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University Press.

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