What is an Interjection? Types of Interjection – Examples

In English grammar, there are various elements and features that help us form unique sentences conveying different thoughts and emotions. While the parts of speech and clauses make the major parts of a sentence, there is another important category known as interjections.

Interjections in a general sense can be understood as words that are grammatically independent of other words in a sentence and have a primary aim of expressing emotions. They are the principal words that one adheres to when it concerns expressing emotions and feelings in a sentence.

However, there are different types of interjections in English grammar. Depending on the way one expresses one’s feelings or emotions, interjections can be divided and understood under different classifications. So, let us have a quick discussion below to have a better and clearer idea.

What is an Interjection?

By definition, we can state that an interjection is a type of word in grammar that is particularly used to express a certain emotion or feeling on the part of the speaker. They are usually used as a single or independent word in a sentence and are generally followed by a punctuation mark. Especially a comma or an exclamation mark is the commonly used punctuation that follows an interjection.

In simple words, interjections can be defined as the different types of words that have a principal aim of expressing the emotions of the speaker to the reader. That means they are the words one uses to begin a sentence and indicate their sentiment or emotions such as joy, excitement, sorrow, disgust, surprise, attention, etc.

List and Examples of Interjection

Interjections are words like; oh, wow, good, ouch, bravo, hurray, hush, shh, ahh, alas, yeah, yikes, help, hi, yes, no, hmm, er, um, etc.

So, interjections are basically used to express a sudden emotion of the speaker. And when an interjection is used in a sentence, there is no specific need for grammatical adjustments with the other words in the sentence. Interjections, in most cases, are used as independent words that are grammatically non-reliant on the other part of the sentence.

Now, let us look at some examples to have a clearer idea:

  • Good! Now you can finally have your lunch and leave for college.
  • Ouch! That must have hurt so badly.
  • Wow! I love how the cheese is melting down the burger.
  • Nah, I don’t think we can make it tonight.
  • What? You never talked about it before!
  • Alas! We can no longer meet him.
  • Well, you can choose both if you wish to.

As we can see, the interjections are independent of the main sentence structure. Their primary aim is to express something that usually comes as a sudden or abrupt emotion. Also, it is to notice that a comma is used to refer to a mild interjection, and an exclamation mark is used to show deep or strong emotion.

Different types of interjection

Considering the examples given above, we can see that each interjection has unique meanings and usage. Depending on that, we can broadly divide interjections into different types.

So, based on the way they are expressed and used, we have the following types of interjections.

1. Interjections for greeting

This is a type of interjection that is used in a sentence to refer to the emotion of warmth to meet with some person. They are basic words such as hello, hey, hi, etc.

For example:

  • Hey! It is so nice to finally meet you all.
  • Hi! I’m glad you could make it.
  • Hello! I’m your new mentor.

2. Interjections for joy

As the name already suggests, this is a type of interjection that is used in a sentence to express an instantaneous pleasure or a feeling of immediate joy and happiness on a happy occasion. They are words such as hurray, wow, congratulations, hurrah, good, etc.

For example:

  • Hurray! We finally did it.
  • Wow! That artwork is so beautiful.
  • Hurray! Now we can go back to our normal practices.

3. Interjections for attention

This is a type of interjection that is used in a sentence to grab the attention of someone or a particular person towards the speaker. They are words such as behold, hush, listen, shh, look, etc.

For example:

  • Look! I have been working all day. I cannot make it today.
  • Shh! Can you keep your mouth shut for a minute?
  • Hush! I think I saw someone near the library.

4. Interjections for approval

This is a type of interjection used in a sentence to simply express an agreement or a strong sense of approval for something that occurred. They are words such as well done, brilliant, bravo, etc.

For example;

  • Well done! You have finally reached the last stage.
  • Brilliant! I have never seen such neat artwork before.
  • Bravo! You have won the race.

5. Interjections for surprise

This is a type of interjection that is used in a sentence to express a strong sense of surprise. That means it indicates a feeling of surprise regarding any incident that has occurred. They are words such as what, oh, ah, eh, ha, etc.

  • What! You could only score 30%.
  • Ah! I finally got a new intern.
  • Oh! You really finished all the food.

6. Interjections for sorrow

This type of interjection is used in a sentence to express a sad emotion about something unfortunate or terrible that has happened. They are words such as ouch, oops, alas, damn, etc.

For example:

  • Alas! She is no longer a member of this family.
  • Ouch! It hurt so badly.
  • Damn! I lost all the balance I had.

So, these are the main types of interjections that express different emotions under different circumstances. However, there are some extra or additional interjections as well. They are interjections for anger, disappointment, annoyance, dismissive, etc.

Nevertheless, the ones we have just studied are the primary ones. And as we can see, each tries to express a particular emotion that the speaker is specifically willing to convey to the reader. Also, interjections are more commonly used in informal texts in electronic messages than formal ones.

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