Nouns

A noun is the name of a person, place, or thing. It is to identify a particular person, place, object, or set of objects. Let’s learn to use Nouns the correct way in English sentences.

A Discussion of Uncountable Nouns with Examples

There’s a Great Deal of Water in the Ocean

Ideologically, some things can’t be counted. For example, liquid can’t be counted like cookies, you can’t have 3 pieces of water.  A liquid can’t be broken down into pieces.

However, a liquid may be divided into cups (metric or otherwise), or measured in abstract quantities like “some.”  And, other substances, like grains of sand, are too numerous to count. 

When it comes to Uncountable Nouns, quantity words are used to give information about the Noun. Words like some, a bit, a handful, a great deal of and so much are used to express the unit of Uncountable Nouns. 

For example, you may hear a native English speaker say “There’s a great deal of water in the ocean.” This states that there’s a lot of water at the bottom of the sea. 

But there’s another route you may take, exact numbers work with Uncountable Nouns as well. For instance, someone may say that there are 321, 003,271 cubic miles of water in the ocean, or they may simply say “I’d like 5 cups of coffee.” 

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Gerunds after Prepositions- Meaning and Use with examples

Meaning of Gerunds

Interestingly, Gerund is pronounced JEH-ruhnd. It’s like GIF or Giraffe. I know there’s a debate about the pronunciation of GIF, but the creator, Steve Wilhite, says that it’s said with a soft j

Simply, a Gerund is a Noun acting as a Verb. A few examples include “going, hearing,” and “having.” We make a Gerund by adding ing to the end of a Verb. 

Gerunds in Sentences

Gerunds may be alone or with other words to form a Gerund Phrase. Altogether, this phrase behaves like a single Noun.

Example: Mowing the lawn is no fun

Much like Nouns and Noun Phrases, Gerunds and Gerund Phrases can be found in the Object, Subject, or Predicate Nominative portions of a sentence (In regards to SVO). And so, Gerunds can act in any way an ordinary Noun can. 

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Possessive Nouns: Meaning and ways of using it in sentences.

Meaning of Possessive noun and how to use it in sentences.

Simply, a Possessive Noun shows ownership. For singular Nouns, a Possessive Noun is made by adding an apostrophe and s to the end of a Noun. For example, if a pen belongs to Aaron, it’s “Aaron’s pen.” 

If the noun is plural and ends in an “s”, place the apostrophe after the finals. For example, “Those are the airplane’s wings.” 

In the following sentence, “William’s” is a possessive Noun, modifying the car to show ownership: 

“William’s car won’t start.”

It is clear that the car belongs to William, the “’s” signifies ownership.

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Here’s a dialogue using the possessive form of Nora. 

John: “Whose moped is that?”

Alice: “That is Nora’s moped.” 

John: “Girls can’t own mopeds.” 

Alice: “Girls can own mopeds, they can drive them too. Nora is an excellent driver. Nora’s moped is fast but she drives safely.”

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The Possessive Form: Definition, meaning with examples

Meaning of the Possessive form

The Possessive Form demonstrates the relationship between two or more objects (physical things, not sentence endings). These sentences are loaded with Nouns, Proper Nouns, and Pronouns. And so, it’s essential to understand the difference between a Proper Noun and a Pronoun to construct Possessive Form sentences. 

Pronouns take the place of a Noun. They are found in a sentence’s Subject as words like “his, her, she” and “theirs.” But, Proper Nouns are specific, capitalized nouns. They may be something like Dr. Smith.  

Let’s look at some Possessive Form sentences:

“Dr. Smith’s cat is at Eric’s house” demonstrates a relationship between “Dr. Smith’s cat” and Eric’s house,” our two Possessive Nouns. And so, our Verb Phrase is “is at.”

Here’s another example of a Possessive Form Sentence: 

“Sarah’s dog is by the station’s door.”

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Definition of Proper Nouns and Common Nouns

Proper Noun

This is a word that substitutes a Noun. It is the name of a person, a place, an animal, or a thing. A proper noun is used to identify a single person, place, animal, or thing specifically.

Examples of Proper Noun

  • Harry likes to Draw
  • London is one of the most beautiful countries I have traveled to
  • Bruno, my dog loves to bask in the sun.

Common Noun

 Is the generic name of a class or section of people, animals, or things. It does not specify anything in particular but speaks of a group or any class of beings or things 

Examples of Common Noun

  • Teachers are the most respected professionals globally
  • The cheetah is the world’s fastest land animal.
  • The Peregrine Falcon is the fastest bird, in fact, it is the fastest animal on the planet.

Nouns: Abstract noun and Collective noun with examples.

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Know how to use Past Continuous Passive voice

Structure and Rules of Using Past Continous Passive Voice

There are times you may want to write in both Passive Voice and Past Continuous tense. Simply, the Past Continuous tense can be identified by the past tense form of “be” and Verbs ending in ing

For example, the sentence: 

“Many elephants were being killed by poachers,” suggests that elephants had been killed by poachers, but no longer are. Something stopped the elephants from being killed. 

Passive Voice is deployed to highlight a sentence’s Object. In our case, “elephants.” By writing the above example, we want the reader to focus on the “elephants” rather than the poachers. “For example,” the sentence could be rewritten in an Active Voice like so:

“Poachers were killing elephants.” 

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Psychologically, we are trained to focus on a sentence’s header. A sentence’s subject is much more significant to the reader or listener. 

You may ask, how was this sentence constructed? There’s a simple format to follow. It goes like this: 

Object + was/were + being + Past Participle Simple, right? 

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Nouns: Abstract noun and Collective noun with examples

What is a Noun?

A noun is the name of a person, place, or thing. When we specify who or what we are particularly speaking of for the listener to be able to relate to, that’s called a noun.

Types of Nouns with examples

Types of NounsDefinition Examples
Proper NounName of a person, a place, an animal, or thing. Max, Burj Khalifa, October.
Common NounName of a class or section of people, animals, or things.Teacher, Doctor, Tiger.
Abstract NounThese are feelings, quality or characteristics, ideas, or state of being.Happy, anger, honest, rich.
Collective Noun Denotes a group of nouns or a set of things. They are a group of common nouns and can be counted. Shoal of fish, Swarm of bees, pack of wolves.

How can we identify the type of Noun?

There are 4 main types of nouns to identify:

  • Proper Noun: Proper nouns is the name of a person or of something you specifically imply. It is the name of a person, place, animal, or thing.
    Examples: Wall Street Journal, Albert Einstein, London, Monday, etc.
  • Common Noun: It refers to the name of a class or section of people, animals, or things.
    Examples: Teacher, Nurse, Street, Post office, Table, Bench, etc.
  • Abstract Noun: They are nouns used to define anything that cannot be seen, touched, or sensed by any of our senses. An idea, a state of being, a feeling, a quality, or a characteristic quality can be termed abstract nouns.
    For example, you can be sad, and feel the emotion, but not touch it, smell it, taste it, or even see it, but you do know it exists within you.
  • Collective Noun: Nouns that are considered to be a group of nouns or a set of things, people, animals, emotions, or concepts considered as a single whole. They are a group of common nouns and can be counted. 
    For example, a banana is a common noun, the collective noun for it
    will be a bunch of bananas/hand of bananas.
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Could vs Can – Ability

“Could” is a Modal Verb. In fact, it acts as the past tense of the Modal Verb can. This Modal Verb refers to the ability to have done something, Don’t worry, this is not as confusing as it seems, here’s a simple dialogue:

Can you pass the test tomorrow? 

I don’t think so.

Could you have passed yesterday’s test? 

Definitely not.

Alternatively, the speaker could’ve said, “Can you pass the test now?”. If they wanted to use the Modal Verb “can” in the present tense. 

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Could vs Can – Request

Both “can” and “could” are Modal Verbs. Despite this similarity, “can” speaks of present/future actions, and “could” speaks of actions that occurred in the past. Here is an example of dialogue:

Can penguins fly?

No, they cannot. 

Could they fly a long time ago? 

No, they couldn’t. 

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