English Language Basic Notes

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  • Created by: gabrielle
  • Created on: 29-04-13 12:14

English Language Basic Revision

Word Classes

Nouns: Refer to people, objects, places, creatures, qualities and ideas.

·  Common: The name of an object, type of animal, person or idea. Can usually be used with the determiner ‘the’ and made into a plural, e.g. ‘the chair’ or ‘the waiter’

·   Proper: The name of a specific person, animal, place, work of art, day etc. Starts with a capital letter and can rarely be made into a plural, e.g. ‘Starbucks’ or  ‘Gemma’

·   Concrete: The name of a touchable, physical object that can be seen and felt. You use all five senses for this object e.g. ‘ice cream’ or ‘flowers’

·    Abstract: The name of an abstract idea, concept, nation or belief, e.g. ‘love’ or ‘peace’

·    Collective: A special class, named groups composed of members e.g. ‘army’ or ‘audience’

·    Count: A noun where you are able to put a number in front of it and put an ‘s’ at the end e.g. ‘seventeen cookies’ or ‘twelve books’

·    Non-Count: A noun where you cannot put a number in front of it and as ‘s’ at the end e.g. ‘weather’, ‘homework’

Verbs: Words used to refer to various kinds of actions (‘run’, ‘study’) and states (‘seem’, ‘be’)

·         Dynamic: Describes an activity or process e.g. ‘run’, ‘study’ or ‘sneeze’

·         Stative: Describes a state e.g. ‘love’, ‘contain’ or ‘seem’

·         Regular: To be able to add ‘–ed’ at the end of the verb e.g. ‘walked’ or ‘smoked’

·         Irregular: Comes in two forms: Primary, Auxiliary or Main Verbs. Follows ‘to be’, ‘to have’, ‘to do’

·         Finite: Has a number, person and tense e.g. ‘you jump’

·         Non-finite: Has no number, person or tense e.g. ‘to jump’ or ‘jumping’

Adjectives: Modifiers which add detail. They contribute significantly to a texts meaning and can do this in two ways: pre-modifying and post-modifying.

Adjectives fall into two main categories:

1.      Descriptors: e.g. colour, shape, size, quantity, extent, time descriptors, emotional etc.

2.      Classifiers: e.g. classificational (‘similar’, ‘original’), affiliative (‘American’, ‘Christian’, ‘United’) or topical (‘chemical’, ‘legal’, ‘medical’)


·         Attributive: Pre-modify a noun as part of a noun phrase e.g.


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