what is this?

Noun: Description and the “Special Function”

à   Description of Noun
As I promised in the previous post, now I will describe further about each of the parts of speech.  The description of noun:

A noun is a naming word.

It can be a name of a person, living creature, thing, place, idea, quality, action, etc. Take a look at the examples below:

Cowboy, theatre, box, thought, tree, kindness, arrival, New York, execution, beauty. 

à   Functions of Noun
Noun has many functions. A noun can be used as the subject of a verb, the object of a verb, an identifying noun, the object of a preposition, or an appositive (an explanatory phrase coupled with a subject or object).

à   Some Characteristic of Noun
- The main/head word in many structures.
- Important part of speech.
- One of the sentence cores.
- A noun, or noun substantive, is a part of speech (a word or phrase) which can co-occur with (in)definite articles and attributive adjectives, and functions as the head of a noun phrase.

- Derives from the Latin nomen. It has meaning “name”. A traditional definition of nouns is that they are all and only those expressions that refer to a person, place, thing, event, substance, quality, or idea.


There is not only a “real” noun that can act like a noun. Adjectives also can be used as Nouns. Look at some examples below:

- The strong, the poor, the big, the dead, the blind, etc.
- The Mongols, the Indonesians, the Chinese, the Australians, etc.
- The executed, the kicked, the deceased, etc.
- The cheapest, the brightest, the smallest, etc.

Verbs also can be used as Nouns. It called Gerunds. Actually, Mr. Enjoy have describe it in the previous post. So, I don’t want to describe it again. If you forgot about Gerunds, please go there

Adverbs also can be used as noun too, e.g. from there, by now

à   “Special” Functions of Nouns:

1. In Central Core:
    a. As Subject (S)
    b. As complement of verb à direct object (DO) and indirect object (IO)
    c. As Subjective complement (Predicate noun) (SC)
    d. As Objective complement (OC)

2. In Structures of Modification:
    e. Object of preposition
        cf. V + Preposition + Noun/Noun Phrase  à  Prepositional object
    f. Apposition (appositive)
    g. Direct address (vocation, vocative)
    h. Noun adjunct
        à Together with the noun form a noun compound
        à Mostly singular
        à Some are plural, e.g. men doctors
    Examples:    (1) David loves Fiona.
                        (2) David sent Fiona money.
                        (3) She took it from David.
                        (4) David is the governor.
                        (5) They elected David their governor.
                        (6) David waited at the rail station.
                        (7) David, president of the club, didn’t come to the meeting.
                        (8) David, go away!

- Larger Structures may function as nouns:
   a. Gerund phrases: Fishing in the river making our mind fresh.
   b. Infinitive phrases: Mike wanted to see him again.
   c. Noun clauses: Ivy said that she had seen Abraham again.

à   Forms of Nouns:
1. Inflectional forms (especially number and possessive)
2. Derivational forms

à   Markers of Nouns:
1. Determiners:
    a. Articles
    b. Possessives
    c. Demonstratives
    d. Numbers
    e. Words of indefinite quantity (some, more)
2. Prepositions
3. Descriptive adjectives in phrases or structures of modification, e.g. the beautiful painting, a long speech.


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