|active voice||one of two voices in English; a direct form of expression where the subject performs or "acts" the verb; see also passive voice|
e.g: "Many people eatrice"
|adjective||part of speech that typically describes or "modifies" a noun|
e.g: "It was a bigdog."
|adjective clause||seldom-used term for relative clause|
|adjunct||word or phrase that adds information to a sentence and that can be removed from the sentence without making the sentence ungrammatical|
e.g: I met John at school.
|adverb||word that modifies a verb, an adjective or another adverb|
e.g: quickly, really, very
|adverbial clause||dependent clause that acts like an adverb and indicates such things as time, place or reason|
e.g:Although we are getting older, we grow more beautiful each day.
|affirmative||statement that expresses (or claims to express) a truth or "yes" meaning; opposite of negative|
e.g: The sun is hot.
|affix||language unit (morpheme) that occurs before or after (or sometimes within) the root or stem of a word|
e.g:un- in unhappy (prefix),-ness in happiness (suffix)
(also known as "concord")
|logical (in a grammatical sense) links between words based on tense,caseornumber|
e.g: this phone, these phones
|antecedent||word, phrase or clause that is replaced by a pronoun (or other substitute) when mentioned subsequently (in the same sentence or later)|
e.g: "Emily is nice because she brings me flowers."
|appositive||noun phrase that re-identifies or describes its neighbouring noun|
e.g: "Canada, a multicultural country, is recognized by its maple leaf flag."
|article||determiner that introduces a noun phrase as definite (the) or indefinite (a/an)|
|aspect||feature of some verb forms that relates to duration or completion of time; verbs can have no aspect (simple), or can have continuous or progressive aspect (expressing duration), or have perfect or perfective aspect (expressing completion)|
(also called "helping verb")
|verb used with the main verb to help indicate something such as tense or voice|
e.g: I do not like you. She has finished. He canswim.
|bare infinitive||unmarked form of the verb (no indication of tense, mood, person, or aspect) without the particle "to"; typically used after modal auxiliary verbs; see also infinitive|
e.g: "He should come", "I can swim"
|base form||basic form of a verb before conjugation into tenses etc|
|case||form of a pronoun based on its relationship to other words in the sentence; case can be subjective,objective or possessive|
e.g: "I love this dog", "This dog loves me", "This is mydog"
|causative verb||verb that causes things to happen such as "make", "get" and "have"; the subject does not perform the action but is indirectly responsible for it|
e.g: "She made me go to school", "I had my nails painted"
|clause||group of words containing a subject and its verb|
e.g: "It was late when he arrived"
|form of an adjective or adverb made with "-er" or "more" that is used to show differences or similarities between two things (not three or more things)|
|complement||part of a sentence that completes or adds meaning to the predicate|
e.g: Mary did not say where she was going.
|compound noun||noun that is made up of more than one word; can be one word, or hyphenated, or separated by a space|
e.g: toothbrush, mother-in-law, Christmas Day
|compound sentence||sentence with at least two independent clauses; usually joined by a conjunction|
e.g: "You can have something healthy but you can't have more junk food."
|concord||another term for agreement|
|conditional||structure in English where one action depends on another ("if-then" or "then-if" structure); most common are 1st,2nd, and 3rd conditionals|
e.g: "If I win I will be happy", "I would be happy if I won"
|conjugate||to show the different forms of a verb according to voice,mood,tense,numberandperson; conjugation is quite simple in English compared to many other languages|
e.g: I walk, you walk, he/she/it walks, we walk, they walk; I walked, you walked, he/she/it walked, we walked, they walked
|conjunction||word that joins or connects two parts of a sentence|
e.g: Ram likes tea and coffee. Anthony went swimming although it was raining.
|content word||word that has meaning in a sentence, such as a verb or noun (as opposed to a structure word, such as pronoun or auxiliary verb); content words are stressed in speech|
e.g: "Could you BRINGmyGLASSES because I've LEFT them at HOME"
(also called "progressive")
|verb form (specifically an aspect) indicating actions that are in progress or continuing over a given time period (can be past, present or future); formed with "BE" + "VERB-ing"|
e.g: "They are watchingTV."
|contraction||shortening of two (or more) words into one|
eg:isn't (is not), we'd've (we would have)
|countable noun||thing that you can count, such as apple, pen, tree (see uncountable noun)|
e.g: one apple, three pens, ten trees
|dangling participle||illogical structure that occurs in a sentence when a writer intends to modify one thing but the reader attaches it to another|
e.g: "Running to the bus, the flowers were blooming." (In the example sentence it seems that the flowers were running.)
|declarative sentence||sentence type typically used to make a statement (as opposed to a question or command)|
e.g: "Tara works hard", "It wasn't funny"
|defining relative clause|
(also called "restrictive relative clause")
|relative clause that contains information required for the understanding of the sentence; not set off with commas; see also non-defining clause|
e.g: "The boy who was wearing a blue shirt was the winner"
|pronounordeterminer that indicates closeness to (this/these) or distance from (that/those) the speaker|
e.g: "This is a nice car", "Can you see thosecars?"
|dependent clause||part of a sentence that contains a subject and a verb but does not form a complete thought and cannot stand on its own; see also independent clause|
e.g: "When the water came out of the tap..."
|determiner||word such as an article or a possessive adjective or other adjective that typically comes at the beginning of noun phrases|
e.g: "It was an excellent film", "Do you like my new shirt?", "Let's buy someeggs"
|direct speech||saying what someone said by using their exact words; see also indirect speech|
e.g: "Lucy said: 'I am tired.'"
|direct object||noun phrase in a sentence that directly receives the action of the verb; see also indirect object|
e.g: "Joey bought the car", "I like it", "Can you see the man wearing a pink shirt and waving a gun in the air?"
|embedded question||question that is not in normal question form with a question mark; it occurs within another statement or question and generally follows statement structure|
e.g: "I don't know where he went," "Can you tell me where it is before you go?", "They haven't decided whether they should come"
|finite verb||verb form that has a specific tense, number and person|
e.g: I work, he works, we learned, they ran
|first conditional||"if-then"conditional structure used for future actions or events that are seen as realistic possibilities|
e.g: "If we win the lottery we will buy a car"
|fragment||incomplete piece of a sentence used alone as a complete sentence; a fragment does not contain a complete thought; fragments are common in normal speech but unusual (inappropriate) in formal writing|
e.g: "When's her birthday? - In December", "Will they come? - Probably not"
|function||purpose or "job" of a word form or element in a sentence|
e.g: The function of a subject is to perform the action. One function of an adjective is to describe a noun. The function of a noun is to name things.
(also called "future progressive")
|tense* used to describe things that will happen in the future at a particular time; formed with WILL + BE + VERB-ing|
e.g: "I will be graduating in September."
|future perfect||tense* used to express the past in the future; formed with WILL HAVE + VERB-ed|
e.g: "I will have graduated by then"
|future perfect continuous||tense* used to show that something will be ongoing until a certain time in the future; formed with WILL HAVE BEEN + VERB-ing|
e.g: "We will have been living there for three months by the time the baby is born"
|future simple||tense* used to describe something that hasn't happened yet such as a prediction or a sudden decision; formed with WILL + BASE VERB|
e.g: "He will be late", "I will answer the phone"
|genitive case||case expressing relationship between nouns (possession, origin, composition etc)|
e.g: "John's dog", "door of the car", "children's songs", "pile of sand"
|gerund||noun form of a verb, formed with VERB-ing|
e.g: "Walking is great exercise"
|gradable adjective||adjective that can vary in intensity or grade when paired with a grading adverb ; see also non-gradable adjective|
e.g: quite hot, very tall
|grading adverb||adverb that can modify the intensity or grade of a gradable adjective|
|hanging participle||another term for dangling participle|
|helping verb||another term for auxiliary verb|
|imperative||form of verb used when giving a command; formed with BASE VERB only|
e.g: "Brush your teeth!"
|indefinite pronoun||pronoun does not refer to any specific person, thing or amount. It is vague and "not definite".|
(also called "main clause")
|group of words that expresses a complete thought and can stand alone as a sentence; see also dependent clause|
e.g: "Tara is eating curry.", "Tara likes orangesandJoe likes apples."
|indirect object||noun phrase representing the person or thing indirectly affected by the action of the verb; see also direct object|
e.g: "She showed me her book collection", "Joey bought his wife a new car"
|indirect question||another term for embedded question|
(also called "reported speech")
|saying what someone said without using their exact words; see direct speech|
e.g: "Lucy said that she was tired"
|infinitive||base form of a verb preceded by "to"**; see also bare infinitive|
e.g: "You need to study harder", "To be, or not to be: that is the question"
|inflection||change in word form to indicate grammatical meaning |
e.g:dog,dogs (two inflections); take,takes,took,taking,taken (five inflections)
|interjection||common word that expresses emotion but has no grammatical value; can often be used alone and is often followed by an exclamation mark|
e.g: "Hi!", "er", "Ouch!", "Dammit!"
|interrogative||(formal) sentence type (typically inverted) normally used when asking a question|
e.g: "Are you eating?", "What are you eating?"
|interrogative pronoun||pronoun that asks a question.|
|intransitive verb||verb that does not take a direct object; see also transitive verb|
e.g. "He is working hard", "Where do you live?"
|inversion||any reversal of the normal word order, especially placing the auxiliary verb before the subject; used in a variety of ways, as in question formation, conditional clauses and agreement or disagreement|
e.g: "Where are your keys?","Had we watched the weather report, we wouldn't have gone to the beach", "So did he", "Neither did she"
see irregular verbs list
|verb that has a different ending for past tense and past participle forms than the regular "-ed"; see also regular verb|
e.g: buy, bought,bought; do, did,done
|lexicon, lexis||all of the words and word forms in a language with meaning or function|
|lexical verb||another term for main verb|
|linking verb||verbs that connect the subject to more information (but do not indicate action), such as "be" or "seem"|
|main clause||another term for independent clause|
(also called "lexical verb")
|any verb in a sentence that is not an auxiliary verb; a main verb has meaning on its own|
e.g: "Does John like Mary?", "I will have arrived by 4pm"
(also called "modal")
|auxiliary verb such as can, could, must, should etc; paired with the bare infinitive of a verb|
e.g: "I should go for a jog"
|modifier||word or phrase that modifies and limits the meaning of another word|
e.g: the house => the white house, the house over there, the house we sold last year
|mood||sentence type that indicates the speaker's view towards the degree of reality of what is being said, for example subjunctive, indicative, imperative|
|morpheme||unit of language with meaning; differs from "word" because some cannot stand alone|
e.g.un-,predict and -able in unpredictable
|multi-word verb||verb that consists of a basic verb + another word or words (preposition and/or adverb)|
e.g:get up(phrasal verb),believe in(prepositional verb),get on with (phrasal-prepositional verb)
|negative||form which changes a "yes" meaning to a "no" meaning; opposite of affirmative|
e.g: "She will not come", "I have never seen her"
|nominative case||another term for subjective case|
|non-defining relative clause|
(also called "non-restrictive relative clause")
|relative clause that adds information but is not completely necessary; set off from the sentence with a comma or commas; see defining relative clause|
e.g: "The boy, who had a chocolate bar in his hand, was still hungry"
|non-gradable adjective||adjective that has a fixed quality or intensity and cannot be paired with a grading adverb; see also gradable adjective|
e.g: freezing, boiling, pregnant
|non-restrictive relative clause||another term for non-defining relative clause|
|noun||part of speech that names a person, place, thing, quality, quantity or concept; see also proper nounandcompound noun|
e.g: "The man is waiting", "I was born in London", "Is that your car?", "Do you like music?"
|noun clause||clause that takes the place of a noun and cannot stand on its own; often introduced with words such as "that, who or whoever"|
e.g: "What the president said was surprising"
|noun phrase (NP)||any word or group of words based on a noun or pronoun that can function in a sentence as a subject, object or prepositional object; can be one word or many words; can be very simple or very complex|
e.g: "She is nice", "When is the meeting?", "The car over there beside the lampost is mine"
|number||change of word form indicating one person or thing (singular) or more than one person or thing (plural)|
e.g: one dog/threedogs,she/they
|object||thing or person affected by the verb; see also direct objectandindirect object|
e.g: "The boy kicked the ball", "We chose the house with the red door"
|objective case||case form of a pronoun indicating an object|
e.g: "John married her", "I gave it to him"
|part of speech||one of the classes into which words are divided according to their function in a sentence|
|participle||verb form that can be used as an adjective or a noun; see past participle,present participle|
|passive voice||one of two voices in English; an indirect form of expression in which the subject receives the action; see also active voice|
e.g: "Rice is eaten by many people"
(also called "simple past")
|tense used to talk about an action, event or situation that occurred and was completed in the past|
e.g: "I lived in Paris for 10 years", "Yesterday we saw a snake"
|past continuous||tense often used to describe an interrupted action in the past; formed with WAS/WERE + VERB-ing|
e.g: "I was reading when you called"
|past perfect||tense that refers to the past in the past; formed with HAD + VERB-ed |
e.g: "We had stopped the car"
|past perfect continuous||tense that refers to action that happened in the past and continued to a certain point in the past; formed with HAD BEEN + VERB-ing|
e.g: "I had been waiting for three hours when he arrived"
|past participle||verb form (V3) - usually made by adding "-ed" to the base verb - typically used in perfect and passive tenses, and sometimes as an adjective|
e.g: "I have finished", "It was seen by many people", "boiledeggs"
|perfect||verb form (specifically an aspect); formed with HAVE/HAS + VERB-ed (present perfect) or HAD + VERB-ed (past perfect)|
|person||grammatical category that identifies people in a conversation; there are three persons: 1st person (pronouns I/me, we/us) is the speaker(s), 2nd person (pronoun you) is the listener(s), 3rd person (pronouns he/him, she/her, it, they/them) is everybody or everything else|
|personal pronoun||pronoun that indicates person|
e.g: "He likes my dogs", "Theylikehim"
|phrasal verb||multi-word verb formed with a verb + adverb|
e.g:break up,turn off (see phrasal verbs list)
NB: many people and books call all multi-word verbs "phrasal verbs" (see multi-word verbs)
|phrase||two or more words that have a single function and form part of a sentence; phrases can be noun, adjective, adverb, verb or prepositional|
|plural||of a noun or form indicating more than one person or thing; plural nouns are usually formed by adding "-s"; see also singular,number|
|position||grammatically correct placement of a word form in a phrase or sentence in relation to other word forms|
e.g: "The correct position for an article is at the beginning of the noun phrase that it describes"
|positive||basic state of an adjective or adverb when it shows quality but not comparativeorsuperlative|
|possessive adjective||adjective (also called "determiner") based on a pronoun: my, your, his, her, its, our, their|
e.g: "I lost my keys", "She likes yourcar"
|possessive case||case form of a pronoun indicating ownership or possession|
e.g: "Mine are blue", "This car is hers"
|possessive pronoun||pronoun that indicates ownership or possession|
e.g: "Where is mine?", "These are yours"
|predicate||one of the two main parts (subject and predicate) of a sentence; the predicate is the part that is not the subject|
e.g: "My brother is a doctor", "Who didyoucall?", "The woman wearing a blue dress helped me"
|prefix||affix that occurs before the root or stem of a word|
|preposition||part of speech that typically comes before a noun phrase and shows some type of relationship between that noun phrase and another element (including relationships of time, location, purpose etc)|
e.g: "We sleep at night", "I live in London", "This is fordigging"
|prepositional verb||multi-word verb that is formed with verb + preposition|
e.g:believe in,look after
|present participle||-ing form of a verb (except when it is a gerund or verbal noun)|
e.g: "We were eating", "The man shouting at the back is rude", "I saw Tara playingtennis"
|present simple (also called "simple present")||tense usually used to describe states and actions that are general, habitual or (with the verb "to be") true right now; formed with the basic verb (+ s for 3rd person singular)|
e.g: "Canadasounds beautiful", "She walks to school", "I am very happy"
|present continuous (also called "present progressive")||tense used to describe action that is in process now, or a plan for the future; formed with BE + VERB-ing|
e.g: "We are watching TV", "I am moving to Canada next month"
|present perfect||tense that connects the past and the present, typically used to express experience, change or a continuing situation; formed with HAVE + VERB-ed |
e.g: "I have worked there", "John has broken his leg", "How long haveyoubeen in Canada?"
|present perfect continuous||tense used to describe an action that has recently stopped or an action continuing up to now; formed with HAVE + BEEN + VERB-ing|
e.g: "I'm tired because I've been running", "He has been living in Canada for two years"
|progressive||another term for continuous|
|pronoun||word that replaces a noun or noun phrase; there are several types including personal pronouns,relative pronounsandindefinite pronouns|
|proper noun||noun that is capitalized at all times and is the name of a person, place or thing|
|punctuation||standard marks such as commas, periods and question marks within a sentence|
e.g:, . ? ! - ; :
|quantifier||determinerorpronoun that indicates quantity|
|question tag||final part of a tag question; mini-question at end of a tag question|
e.g: "Snow isn't black, is it?"
|question word||another term for WH-word|
|reciprocal pronoun||pronoun that indicates that two or more subjects are acting mutually; there are two in English - each other, one another|
e.g: "John and Mary were shouting at each other", "The students accused one another of cheating"
|reduced relative clause|
(also called "participial relative clause")
|construction similar to a relative clause, but containing a participle instead of a finite verb; this construction is possible only under certain circumstances |
e.g: "The woman sitting on the bench is my sister", "The people arrested by the police have been released"
|reflexive pronoun||pronoun ending in -self or -selves, used when the subject and object are the same, or when the subject needs emphasis|
e.g: "She drove herself", "I'll phone her myself"
see regular verbs list
|verb that has "-ed" as the ending for past tense and past participle forms; see also irregular verb|
e.g: work, worked, worked
|relative adverb||adverb that introduces a relative clause; there are four in English: where,when,wherever,whenever; see also relative pronoun|
|relative clause||dependent clause that usually starts with a relative pronoun such as who or which, or relative adverb such as where|
e.g: "The person who finishes first can leave early" (defining), "Texas, where my brother lives, is big" (non-defining)
|relative pronoun||pronoun that starts a relative clause; there are five in English: who,whom,whose,which,that; see also relative adverb|
|reported speech||another term for indirect speech|
|restrictive relative clause||another term for defining relative clause|
|second conditional||"if-then"conditional structure used to talk about an unlikely possibility in the future|
e.g: "If we won the lottery we would buy a car"
|sentence||largest grammatical unit; a sentence must always include a subject (except for imperatives) and predicate; a written sentence starts with a capital letter and ends with a full stop/period (.), question mark (?) or exclamation mark (!); a sentence contains a complete thought such as a statement, question, request or command|
e.g: "Stop!", "Do you like coffee?", "I work."
|series||list of items in a sentence|
e.g: "The children ate popsicles, popcorn and chips"
|singular||of a noun or form indicating exactly one person or thing; singular nouns are usually the simplest form of the noun (as found in a dictionary); see also plural,number|
|split infinitive||situation where a word or phrase comes between the particle "to" and the verb in an infinitive; considered poor construction by some |
e.g: "He promised to never lieagain"
|Standard English (S.E.)||"normal" spelling, pronunciation and grammar that is used by educated native speakers of English|
|structure word||word that has no real meaning in a sentence, such as a pronoun or auxiliary verb (as opposed to a content word, such as verb or noun); structure words are not normally stressed in speech|
e.g: "Could youBRINGmyGLASSESbecause I'veLEFTthem atHOME"
|subject||one of the two main parts (subject and predicate) of a sentence; the subject is the part that is not the predicate; typically, the subject is the first noun phrase in a sentence and is what the rest of the sentence "is about"|
e.g: "The rain water was dirty", "Mary is beautiful", "Who saw you?"
also called "nominative"
|case form of a pronoun indicating a subject|
e.g: Did she tell you about her?
|subjunctive||fairly rare verb form typically used to talk about events that are not certain to happen, usually something that someone wants, hopes or imagines will happen; formed with BARE INFINITIVE (except past of "be")|
e.g: "The President requests that John attend the meeting"
|subordinate clause||another term for dependent clause|
|suffix||affix that occurs after the root or stem of a word|
e.g: happiness, quickly
|superlative, superlative adjective||adjective or adverb that describes the extreme degree of something|
|SVO||subject-verb-object; a common word order where the subject is followed by the verb and then the object|
e.g: "The man crossed the street"
|syntax||sentence structure; the rules about sentence structure|
|tag question||special construction with statement that ends in a mini-question; the whole sentence is a tag question; the mini-question is a question tag; usually used to obtain confirmation|
e.g: "The Earth is round, isn't it?", "You don't eat meat, do you?"
|tense||form of a verb that shows us when the action or state happens (past, present or future). Note that the name of a tense is not always a guide to when the action happens. The "present continuous tense", for example, can be used to talk about the present or the future.|
|third conditional||"if-then"conditional structure used to talk about a possible event in the past that did not happen (and is therefore now impossible)|
e.g: "If we had won the lottery we would have bought a car"
|transitive verb||action verb that has a direct object (receiver of the action); see also intransitive verb|
e.g: "The kids always eat a snack while they watch TV"
(also called "mass nouns" or "non-count")
|thing that you cannot count, such as substances or concepts; see also countable nouns|
|usage||way in which words and constructions are normally used in any particular language|
|V1, V2, V3||referring to Verb 1, Verb 2, Verb 3 - being the base, past and past participle that students typically learn for irregular verbs |
e.g: speak, spoke, spoken
|verb||word that describes the subject's action or state and that we can change or conjugate based on tenseandperson|
e.g: (to) work, (to) love, (to) begin
|voice||form of a verb that shows the relation of the subject to the action; there are two voices in English: active,passive|
|WH-question||question using a WH-word and expecting an answer that is not "yes" or "no"; WH-questions are "open" questions; see also yes-no question|
e.g: Where are you going?
(also called "question word")
|word that asks a WH-question; there are 7 WH-words: who, what, where, when, which, why, how|
|word order||order or sequence in which words occur within a sentence; basic word order for English is subject-verb-object or SVO|
|yes-no question||question to which the answer is yes or no; yes-no questions are "closed" questions; see also WH-question|
e.g: "Do you like coffee?"
|zero conditional||"if-then"conditional structure used when the result of the condition is always true (based on fact)|
e.g: "If you dial O, the operator comes on"