Grammar terms

September 3, 2011pdf

Bare infinitive
An infinitive not preceded by to. Examples are: write, work, sing, draw, paint etc.

Bound morpheme
A morpheme which cannot stand alone to make a word. A bound morpheme must be combined with at least one another morpheme within a word. In English, the most familiar types of bound morphemes are prefixes and suffixes.

Collective noun
A noun which denotes a collection of individual persons or objects. Examples are: committee, team, government, jury, army, police etc.
In British English, a collective noun may be treated either as singular or as plural. In American English, a collective noun is always treated as singular.

Colloquial speech
Colloquial speech is the informal everyday speech that everybody uses in informal circumstances. Although, colloquial speech is different from the language we use in formal speech or writing, it is not vulgar or wrong.

Common gender
The term common gender refers to the property of a noun which can be assigned to more than one gender. English examples include teacher, doctor, child, parent, student, writer etc.

Comparative clause
A clause attached to a comparative. For example, in the sentence ‘The task was more difficult than I expected, the comparative clause is ‘than I expected’. When no verb is present, the comparative expression is a phrase, not a clause.

He is taller than me. (comparative phrase – than me)

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