Subjects and Verbs
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How can you tell that a word is functioning as a verb (and isn't averb-form functioning as an adverbial, adjectival, or nominal)
Has a subject. Reflects the sentence's tense.
How can you find a verb phrase's simple subject?
Ask the subject question, "What + [verb]?"
Name three ways you can know that a noun near a verb phrase is NOT the simple subject
- 1. Does not meaningfully answer the subject question.
- 2. Does not agree in number with the verb phrase.
- 3. Is a prepositional object.
What is a "simple subject"?
The single noun that best answers the subject question,"[verb] + what?
What is a "compound subject"?
Two or more subjects that share the same verb.
What is a "compound verb"?
Two or more verbs that share the same subject.
In most sentences, the verb comes just after the subject. Name four types of sentences or clauses in which this is NOT true.
- 1. "There"-clauses
- 2. Interrogative clauses
- 3. Imperative clauses
- 4. Minor sentences
Name 6 significant groups of irregular verbs
- 1. Strong verbs
- 2. Verbs that use the base form in past tense
- 3. "-t" verbs
- 4. Verbs with "-en" past participles
- 5."-ought/-aught" verbs
- 6. "go" and "be"
How can tense affect a verb's inflection?
The past tense requires an inflection different from the presenttense.
How can number affect a verb's inflection?
- 1. In 3rd person present tense, singular verbs take the -s inflection, plural verbs do not.
- 2. The irregular verb "be" varies according to number: I am> We are; I was > We were.
How can person affect a verb's inflection?
- 1. The 3rd person present tense inflection takes a unique -s inflection.
- 2. The irregular verb "be" varies according to person: I am> you are > he is >; I was > you were
When do we use the -s form of a verb?
3rd person singular, present tense
When do we use the -ed form of a verb?
Regular past tense and past participle
What is the "progressive construction"?
- 1. ["be"-auxiliary] + ["-ing" inflection(present participle)]
- 2. The "-ing" inflection represents an action in progress.
What is the "perfect construction"?
["have"-auxiliary] + ["-ed/-en" inflection(past participle)]
What is the "passive construction"?
- 1. ["be"-auxiliary] + ["-ed/-en" inflection (pastparticiple)]
- 2. The past participle represents an action that is done by something or somebody (stated or unstated).
Which form of the verb do we use in imperative clauses?
What is a multi-word verb?
The combination of a verb and a preposition or adverb that work asa pair to create the verb's unique meaning.
In the clause "the creepy fellow below the stairs whispers tohimself," what is the verb phrase and what is the subject, and how do you know?
- 1. VP = "whispers"; S = "fellow"
- 2. "Whispers" has a subject and reflects the sentence's tense.
- 3. "Fellow" answers the subject question, "What whispers?", and agrees with the VP in number.
In the clause "that creepy fellow, bent and broken by yearsof crouching under stairs, muttered to me," how do you know that "bent,""broken," and "crouching" are NOT functioning as verb phrases (even though they're all verb-forms)? And how do you know that"muttered" IS a verb phrase?
- 1. None of them have subjects, and none of them reflect tense.
- 2. "Muttered" has a subject, "fellow," and reflects the tense.
In the clause "the gods are furious," how do you know that "furious" is not part of the verb phrase?
Nothing can "furious," so furious cannot be a main verb.
In the clause "there is a rat under the table," what is the verb phrase and what is the subject, and how do you know?
- 1. VP = "is"; S = "rat"
- 2. "Is" is always a verb. Here it has a subject and reflects the sentence's tense.
- 3. "What is? Rat is." In "there"-clauses, the subject typically comes after the VP.
In the clause "now study for your math test," what is the verb phrase and what is the subject, and how do you know?
- 1. VP = "study"; S = implied "you"
- 2. This is an imperative clause, a command, in which the VP takes the base form and the subject is implied rather than stated
In the clause "Have you seen Maria?" what is the verb phrase and what is the subject, and how do you know?
- 1. VP = "have seen"; S = "you"
- 2. This is an interrogative clause in which the subject sits between the auxiliary and main verb. "What has seen? You."
How do you know that infinitives do not function as verb phrases?
They do not have subjects and do not reflect the sentence's tense.
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