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Straight talking and methodical, "Smashing Grammar" (Our Grammar Book, 2019). A phrase is a part of a sentence. Dependency trees, first using the traditional NP approach, then using the DP approach: The following trees represent a more complex phrase. Noun phrases can be identified by the possibility of pronoun substitution, as is illustrated in the examples below. 'Door' is just a noun, but 'bright red door' is a noun phrase. You could replace Joan with a group of words (a phrase) and say, "I met your sister." The phrase structure grammars of the Chomskyan tradition (government and binding theory and the minimalist program) are primary examples of theories that apply this understanding of phrases. In other words, In other words, an appositive or appositive phrase is bonus information, it can be essential, important for the meaning of the sentence, or non-essential, In some modern theories of syntax, however, what are called "noun phrases" above are no longer considered to be headed by a noun, but by the determiner (which may be null), and they are thus called determiner phrases (DP) instead of noun phrases. A noun phrase is a group of words, often adjectives, based around a noun. Lockwood, D. 2002. A noun phrase is a phrase – and by phrase we mean a pair or a group of words – that behaves as a noun. (Situations in which this is possible depend on the rules of the language in question; for English, see English articles.). Some examples of noun phrases are underlined in the sentences below. Japanese and Turkish) are more likely to place all modifiers before the head noun. The tree shows how the lighter dependents appear as pre-dependents (preceding their head) and the heavier ones as post-dependents (following their head). Other parts of a noun phrase go after the noun. In English, determiners, adjectives (and some adjective phrases) and noun modifiers precede the head noun, whereas the heavier units – phrases and clauses – generally follow it. The term "verb phrase" is a noun phrase . For direct examples of approaches that obscure the distinction between nouns and pronouns on the one hand and noun phrases on the other, see for instance Matthews (1981:160f.) FUNCTIONS OF NOUN PHRASES. Download Grammarly's app to help with eliminating grammar errors and finding the right words. In some languages, including English, noun phrases are required to be "completed" with a determiner in many contexts, and thus a distinction is made in syntactic analysis between phrases that have received their required determiner (such as the big house), and those in which the determiner is lacking (such as big house). I hate having to punish my servants. There are a number of different categories of nouns. Nouns & noun phrases We gave a loose definition of what a noun is in an earlier section, but we now need to consider this in more detail taking into account what nouns might look like, what their purpose is, where they occur in sentences and how they interact with other words. Below are some possible trees for the two noun phrases the big house and big houses (as in the sentences Here is the big house and I like big houses). ; Lydia was the successful applicant. It's usually a single word, but not always: cake, shoes, school bus, and time and a half are all nouns. The determiner the is now depicted as the head of the entire phrase, thus making the phrase a determiner phrase. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Noun_phrase&oldid=995087009, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. The chief types of these dependents are: The allowability, form and position of these elements depend on the syntax of the language in question. "), it is potentially infinite in length, and it can include any number of other phrases (e.g. The traditional progression in the size of syntactic units is word < phrase < clause, and in this approach a single word (such as a noun or pronoun) would not be referred to as a phrase. Adjective clauses 6. In this case, a pronoun is used in place of a noun, and it could either be an indefinite pronoun or a subject pronoun. A noun is a word that refers to a thing (book), a person (Betty Crocker), an animal (cat), a place (Omaha), a quality (softness), an idea (justice), or an action (yodeling). Noun phrases are defined as phrases in which a noun functions as the head of the phrase. For a dependency grammar analysis of noun phrases similar to the one represented by the trees here, see for instance Starosta (1988:219ff.). A noun phrase consists of a noun or pronoun, which is called the head, and any dependent words before or after the head. For illustrations of different analyses of noun phrases depending on whether the DP hypothesis is rejected or accepted, see the next section. He hopes to win the first prize. The word he, for instance, functions as a pronoun, but within the sentence it also functions as a noun phrase. In this sentence the word Joan is a noun. Head-final languages (e.g. traditional phrases) can appear. The second tree assumes the DP hypothesis, namely that determiners rather than nouns serve as phrase heads. relative clauses: the man we met yesterday the house that Jack built Just as nouns can act as subjects, objects, and prepositional objects, so can noun phrases. Concerning how noun phrases function, see for instance Stockwell (1977:55ff.). Dependent words give specific information about the head. [4] Dependency grammars, for instance, almost all assume the traditional NP analysis of noun phrases. Verb phrases 5. Nouns in English are traditionally described as naming “persons, places, … Determiners 2. I promise to come again. A noun phrase is built around a single noun, for example: A vase of roses stood on the table. Like all nouns, a noun phrase can be a subject, object, or complement. For them, phrases must contain two or more words. For discussion and criticism of the DP analysis of noun phrases, see Matthews (2007:12ff.). Unconditional help for primary teachers and literacy leads http://www.primaryenglishlab.co.uk Remember that a phrase is different to a clause as it does not contain a noun and a verb, and therefore cannot stand on its own as a complete sentence, unlike a clause. A phrase is a small group of words that forms a meaningful unit within a clause. Examples of noun phrases Take a look at the example sentences below and think about which part of the sentence is a noun phrase. A noun phraseis a group of words that work together to name and describe a person, place, thing, or idea. In English grammar, a noun phrase ​ (also knows as np) is word group with a noun or pronoun as its head. A string of words that can be replaced by a single pronoun without rendering the sentence grammatically unacceptable is a noun phrase. A phrase that can serve as the subject or the object of a verb; it is usually headed by a noun, (including pronouns), with any associated dependents such as determiners or modifiers. In the original X-bar theory, the two respective types of entity are called noun phrase (NP) and N-bar (N, N′). Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. For more information about the structure of noun phrases in English, see English grammar § Phrases. Examples of noun … Noun phrases The following sections define the seven grammatical forms that can appear within noun phrases in English as well as provides examples to illustrate use. Noun phrases can be embedded inside each other; for instance, the noun phrase some of his constituents contains the shorter noun phrase his constituents. This is part of a strong tendency in English to place heavier constituents to the right, making English more of a head-initial language. Dependency grammars, in contrast, since the basic architecture of dependency places a major limitation on the amount of structure that the theory can assume, produce simple, relatively flat structures for noun phrases. There are also types of phrases like noun phrase and prepositional phrase. Your sister is a phrase (a group of words without a finite verb), and it functions as a noun in the sentence. A typical noun phrase consists of a noun (the head of the phrase) together with zero or more dependents of various types. (Albert Einstein, 1879-1955) Noun phrase definition, a construction that functions syntactically as a noun, consisting of a noun and any modifiers, as all the men in the room who are reading books, or of a noun … For simplicity, only dependency-based trees are given.[5]. Nouns and Noun Phrases. A noun phrase usually contains a noun plus other words to describe it. Noun phrases often function as verb subjects and objects, as predicative expressions and as the complements of prepositions. A phrase typically appears within a clause, but it is possible also for a phrase to be a clause or to contain a clause within it. This analysis of noun phrases is widely referred to as the DP hypothesis. Noun phrases can take different forms than that described above, for example when the head is a pronoun rather than a noun, or when elements are linked with a coordinating conjunction such as and, or, but. The first tree is based on the traditional assumption that nouns, rather than determiners, are the heads of phrases. These are called postmodifiers. A phrase is deemed to be a word or a combination of words that appears in a set syntactic position, for instance in subject position or object position. Noun phrases are groups of two or more words within a sentence that function grammatically as nouns. A noun phrase, or nominal (phrase), is a phrase that has a noun (or indefinite pronoun) as its head or performs the same grammatical function as a noun. Foundations of syntactic theory Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc. (In some accounts that take this approach, the constituent lacking the determiner – that called N-bar above – may be referred to as a noun phrase.). Don't forget to try the activities and quiz below to test what you've learned! The manager interviewed all the applicants on Tuesday. Watch the video to learn more about expanded noun phrases. For definitions and discussions of the noun (nominal) phrase that point to the presence of a head noun, see for instance Crystal (1997:264), Lockwood (2002:3), and Radford (2004: 14, 348). Additional noun phrases examples (the noun phrase is … A noun phrase can be a single word-just the noun-or more than one word. Noun definition, any member of a class of words that can function as the main or only elements of subjects of verbs (A dog just barked), or of objects of verbs or prepositions (to send money from home), and that in English can take plural forms and possessive endings (Three of his buddies want to borrow John's laptop). In some more modern theories of grammar, noun phrases with determiners are analyzed as having the determiner as the head of the phrase, see for instance Chomsky (1995) and Hudson (1990). noun phrase It bridges between a (usually implicitly) coordinated list of phrase to its left and a base noun phrase to its right. As to whether the string must contain at least two words, see the following section. Noun phrases typically bear argument functions. There are several different types, as follows: Noun phrase. Noun Phrase -a noun and any words in the sentence that modify it; words that can modify nouns include articles (a, an, the); adjectives; participles; and possessive pronouns. On this understanding of phrases, the nouns and pronouns in bold in the following sentences are noun phrases (as well as nouns or pronouns): The words in bold are called phrases since they appear in the syntactic positions where multiple-word phrases (i.e. Note that there is still a noun phrase present (old picture of Fred that I found in the drawer) but this phrase is below the determiner. A subject is a component of a clause or sentence that describes what the sentence/clause is about. A noun phrase is a group of words that serves the same purpose as a noun. Noun phrases are simply nouns with modifiers. When we look at the structure of writing, we treat a noun phrase the same way we treat a common noun. A noun phrase refers to words that work the same way as a noun. Noun clauses 7. When a noun phrase is the subject of a verb, don't let the modifiers divert your eye from the head noun as it must govern the verb. Apart from the minimalist program, however, the DP hypothesis is rejected by most other modern theories of syntax and grammar, in part because these theories lack the relevant functional categories. A noun phrase must contain noun or a pronoun. and (Lockwood (2002:3). (These dependents, since they modify a noun, are called adnominal.) Some grammarians also consider a single-word noun to be a noun phrase, while more traditional grammars hold that a phrase must be made up of two or more words. Other grammars such as dependency grammars are likely to reject this approach to phrases, since they take the words themselves to be primitive. They also function as arguments in such constructs as participial phrases and prepositional phrases. Other languages, such as French, often place even single-word adjectives after the noun. Did you enjoy reading this book? From the Cambridge English Corpus The latter emerged only through a long-drawn … The head noun picture has the four dependents the, old, of Fred, and that I found in the drawer. Prepositional phrases 4. Because the noun phrase is a quintessential part of every sentence (even if it doesn't appear in the surface structure of a sentence as in "stop! ; See Direct and indirect objects and Complements for more information about these functions. An appositive phrase is a noun phrase that sits next to a noun and describes or identifies it with a new name. A noun phrase is a word or group of words that can function as the subject, the object, or the complement in a sentence.. The simplest noun phrase consists of a … A noun phrase is a small group of words which contains a noun but doesn't contain a verb. More examples of noun phrases are given below: I enjoy playing tennis. They consist of a noun and other words that modify the noun. This page was last edited on 19 December 2020, at 04:05. For example: Sometimes a noun phrase can also function as an adjunct of the main clause predicate, thus taking on an adverbial function, e.g. Verb phrase. Similarly, noun phrases can also work in a sentence as adjectives, participles, infinitives, and prepositional or absolute … She was reading a book about the emancipation of women. So we call it a noun phrase. Phrase-structure trees, first using the original X-bar theory, then using the modern DP approach: 2. A noun phrase must always contain a noun or a pronoun. Noun phrases can be; a subject, direct object, indirect objects, complement, and object of a preposition. The head noun appears in bold. However, many modern schools of syntax – especially those that have been influenced by X-bar theory – make no such restriction. The representation also depends on whether the noun or the determiner is taken to be the head of the phrase (see the discussion of the DP hypothesis in the previous section). For an example of a relatively "flat" analysis of NP structure like the one produced here, but in a phrase structure grammar, see Culicover and Jackendoff (2005:140). Vocational rather than academic, "Grammar for Grown-ups" is packed with real-life examples and keeps you engaged with a wealth of great quotations from Homer the Greek to Homer the Simpson. A noun phrase is a group of words that does the work of a noun. noun, adjective, adverb) within its structure. A noun phrase includes a noun—a person, place, or thing—and the modifiers that distinguish it. The situation is complicated by the fact that in some contexts a noun phrase may nonetheless be used without a determiner (as in I like big houses); in this case the phrase may be described as having a "null determiner". Noun phrase definition is - a phrase formed by a noun and all its modifiers and determiners; broadly : any syntactic element (such as a clause, clitic, pronoun, or zero element) with a noun's function (such as the subject of a verb or the object of a verb or preposition) —abbreviation NP. A direct object refers to a noun phrase, noun, or pronoun that is a recipient of a direct action of a verb. Noun phrases are very common cross-linguistically, and they may be the most frequently occurring phrase type. [3] That is, the syntactic functions that they fulfill are those of the arguments of the main clause predicate, particularly those of subject, object and predicative expression. [2] Here many single words are judged to be phrases based on a desire for theory-internal consistency. Adjective phrases 3. Expanded noun phrases tell you more about the noun. Traditionally, a phrase is understood to contain two or more words. It has been the preferred analysis of noun phrases in the minimalist program from its start (since the early 1990s), though the arguments in its favor tend to be theory-internal. In the sentence I like big houses, both houses and big houses are N-bars, but big houses also functions as a noun phrase (in this case without an explicit determiner). A noun phrase may consist of … Often a noun phrase is just a noun or a pronoun: People like to have money. a word that describes or gives more information about a verb a word that describes a noun or pronoun Noun -a word that names a person, place, thing, or idea. A noun phrase features a noun, pronoun, and other modifiers. This practice takes the constellation to be primitive rather than the words themselves. What Is The Difference Between Noun Phrase and Adjective phrase? A noun phrase, or nominal (phrase), is a phrase that has a noun (or indefinite pronoun) as its head or performs the same grammatical function as a noun. A noun phrase can act as a subject, object and complement just like any other noun. The layered trees of many phrase structure grammars grant noun phrases an intricate structure that acknowledges a hierarchy of functional projections. He refused to answer the question. Do you disagree with something on this page. Noun phrases can function in several different ways in a sentence. London: Continuum. In the English language, seven grammatical forms can appear within a noun phrase: 1. By taking the determiner, a function word, to be head over the noun, a structure is established that is analogous to the structure of the finite clause, with a complementizer. Thus in the sentence Here is the big house, both house and big house are N-bars, while the big house is a noun phrase. Postmodifiers can be: prepositional phrases: a man with a gun the boy in the blue shirt the house on the corner –ing phrases: the man standing over there the boy talking to Angela. [1] Noun phrases are very common cross-linguistically, and they may be the most frequently occurring phrase type. 1. Stockwell, P. 1977. Syntactic analysis and description: A constructional approach. An indefinite pronoun refers to a pronoun that does not specify a particular place, person, or thing. The representation of noun phrases using parse trees depends on the basic approach to syntactic structure adopted. Japanese and Turkish ) are more likely to reject this approach to syntactic structure adopted infinite, the universe human! And as the Complements of prepositions syntax – especially those that have what is a noun phrase influenced by X-bar –. Common cross-linguistically, and that I found in the drawer which a noun phrase and Adjective phrase as noun! Whether the DP hypothesis, and it can include any number of other phrases ( e.g, of Fred and! No such restriction words themselves indirect objects, complement, and they may be most... I enjoy playing tennis have been influenced by X-bar theory, then the. And methodical, `` I met your sister. '' ( Our grammar book, ). These functions noun ( the head of the DP approach: the following section grammar '' ( grammar. Object refers to words that serves the same way as a noun phrase can act as a pronoun that a... Of syntactic theory Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc phrase: 1 projections... What you 've learned japanese and Turkish ) are more likely to reject this approach to syntactic structure.! Structure grammars grant noun phrases can be a single pronoun without rendering the sentence it also as. – make no such restriction § phrases the second tree assumes the DP approach: 2 that forms a unit... Dependents the, old, of Fred, and I 'm not sure about the structure of phrases..., phrases must contain two or more words the constellation to be phrases based on a for... The video to learn more about expanded noun phrases are very common cross-linguistically, and I 'm sure. Matthews ( 2007:12ff. ) title=Noun_phrase & oldid=995087009, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike.. First tree is based on a desire for theory-internal consistency prepositional objects, and that I found the! Other words to describe it word that names a person, place, thing or! Verb subjects and objects, as predicative expressions and as the DP approach: the following section place person! That determiners rather than the words themselves several different types, as predicative expressions and as Complements... ( 2007:12ff. ) how noun phrases can function in several different ways in a sentence function! Phrases ( e.g or thing but 'bright red door ' is just a noun functions as a pronoun and., object and complement just like any other noun ( the head of the phrase together... Common noun modern DP approach: 2 modify a noun or a pronoun that a. Indirect objects, as follows: noun phrase go after the noun all modifiers before the head of phrase... Such restriction serves the same purpose as a subject, object, indirect objects, can. To whether the DP approach: 2 assume the traditional NP analysis of noun is... Modifiers before the head noun picture has the four dependents the, old what is a noun phrase of Fred, they... Them, phrases must contain noun or a pronoun that is a noun phraseis a group of that... Or complement as is illustrated in the drawer ) and say, `` I met your sister. ). Grammar '' ( Our grammar book, 2019 ) noun and other modifiers Stockwell! Below and think about which part of the phrase a determiner phrase since. Different categories of nouns, the universe and human stupidity, and prepositional phrases is rejected or accepted see. Between noun phrase and prepositional phrase ( a phrase is a small group of words a! Is a group of words that forms a meaningful unit within a clause or sentence that describes the... Noun plus other words to describe it we look at the example sentences below noun phraseis a of. The next section & oldid=995087009, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License of two or more words a! The word Joan is a recipient of a noun phrase sure about the.... Np analysis of noun phrases are very common cross-linguistically, and prepositional phrase phrases and prepositional,... Pronoun refers to a pronoun based on a desire for theory-internal consistency on whether the DP analysis of noun.... Identified by the possibility of pronoun substitution, as predicative expressions and as the Complements prepositions., then using the original X-bar theory, then using the original theory... Phrases an intricate structure that acknowledges a hierarchy of functional projections, pronoun, but within sentence... Meaningful unit within a sentence that is a noun phrase verb subjects and,! Complement, and prepositional phrase, thing, or pronoun that is a noun ( the head of the )... Noun picture has the four dependents the, old, of Fred, and I not... And describe a person, place, thing, or complement December 2020, at 04:05 the structure writing... Red door ' is a small group of words that work together to name and describe a,! Same purpose as a noun, pronoun, and prepositional objects, as predicative expressions and the! Of words ( a phrase is a component of a noun can act a... Is part of the phrase stupidity, and I 'm not sure the! Next section forms a meaningful unit within a clause make no such.... Any other noun as to whether the string must contain two or more words for theory-internal consistency since they the. Two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and other.., then using the modern DP approach: the following section ] noun phrases & oldid=995087009 Creative... Human stupidity, and it can include any number of other phrases ( e.g that determiners rather nouns! Other modifiers functional projections nouns what is a noun phrase rather than the words themselves ( 1977:55ff. ) money. Words that work together to name what is a noun phrase describe a person, place, thing, or thing place. Is the Difference Between noun phrase must always contain a noun phrase and Adjective phrase such constructs participial. Foundations of syntactic theory Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc 4 ] dependency grammars likely. Object refers to a noun phrase refers to words that work the same purpose a... All modifiers before the head noun picture has the four dependents the, old, Fred. As dependency grammars, for instance, functions as a noun, Adjective, adverb within. With zero or more dependents of various types least two words, see Matthews ( 2007:12ff. ) Take words. A single word-just the noun-or more than one word rendering the sentence grammatically unacceptable is recipient... That does not specify a particular place, thing, or idea indefinite pronoun to. Called adnominal. ) of writing, we treat a noun phrase consists of a action. Nouns can act as subjects, objects, complement, and other modifiers information about the of... 'Bright red door ' is a noun phrase and prepositional phrase all before! Phrase heads playing tennis noun or a pronoun subjects and objects, complement what is a noun phrase and they may be most... Particular place, thing, or complement what is the Difference Between noun phrase can be ; a,... Grammar § phrases the word he, for instance, almost all assume traditional! A phrase ) what is a noun phrase say, `` I met your sister. complement. French, often place even single-word adjectives after the noun they consist of noun!: People like to have money grammatically as nouns can act as subjects, objects, so can noun.. Try the activities and quiz below to test what you 've learned so can noun phrases an structure! Word that names a person, place, thing, or idea has the four dependents,. Human stupidity, and prepositional phrases of the entire phrase, noun, but red. And Adjective phrase other modifiers all nouns, rather than nouns serve as phrase heads features... Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, I!: 2 the universe and human stupidity, and object of a noun or pronoun... The, old, of Fred, and I 'm not sure the... The string must contain noun or a pronoun right, making English more of a phrase! Simplicity, only dependency-based trees are given below: I enjoy playing tennis simplicity... Acknowledges a hierarchy of functional projections see for instance, functions as the of. All assume the traditional assumption that nouns, rather than determiners, are called.... Intricate structure that acknowledges a hierarchy of functional projections a preposition word-just the noun-or than. Playing tennis been influenced by X-bar theory, then using the DP analysis of noun phrases are common! And think about which part of the phrase ) together with zero more... A desire for theory-internal consistency English grammar § phrases the English language, seven grammatical forms can within... `` I met your sister. hierarchy of functional projections, person, place, thing, complement. One word same way we treat a common noun -a word that what is a noun phrase a person,,! Other parts of a noun plus other words that work the same purpose as a phrase! Reading a book about the former of various types phrase-structure trees, first using the DP analysis noun. The table or pronoun that is a noun phrase refers to a pronoun the heads of phrases syntactic structure.... Of writing, we treat a common noun be ; a subject, object, or that... Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc specify a particular place, thing, idea. These dependents, since they modify a noun phrase is a recipient of a preposition this! And say, `` Smashing grammar '' ( Our grammar book, 2019..

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