In English grammar, there are several parts of speech. And noun is amongst them. It is, in fact, the most important and basic part that one needs to know thoroughly to excel in the English language.
We engage with nouns every day, even without realizing it. Nouns are basically the names given to the things, places, people, or animals that exist in this world. It can be anything as long as it holds meaning for itself.
Nouns are not very complicated. However, its types and different uses can get a little complicated if one is not fully aware of its rules. So, let us discuss nouns and try to understand the concept more precisely.
The definition of a noun
A noun is a part of speech that refers to things, people, animals, or places. It is simply anything that we can perceive or imagine.
Let us look at some basic examples;
Man, doctor, lawyer, teacher, mother
Dog, cow, cat, monkey, rat
City, town, New York, Delhi, house
Pen, book, table, chair, bottle
Nouns refer to anything and everything that we see, feel, or perceive.
Usage and functions of nouns
The definition of a noun is easy and simple. However, how and where nouns are used is something we need to know better.
The most common usage and recognition of nous are as follows;
Name of something. Whenever we name a place or a person in a sentence, that particular word is called a noun. We use nouns to name things, people, animals, or places.
Acts as a subject of a verb. In a sentence when we refer to someone or something doing a particular job. Then that “doing” is a verb. But who or what is doing that job is called a noun. Which means it can act as the subject of the verb.
- John wrote the book.
- A speeding truck hit the car parked on the roadside.
Used with articles. Whenever an article or determiner is used alongside a word, that word is known as a noun. Nouns usually come after articles or determiners.
For instance, a book, a pencil, the paper
Acts as an object of verb. For example, she is eating a bar of chocolate. Here, eating is a verb, and chocolate is a noun. So, a noun can also act as an object of a verb.
A base for adjectives. When a word is modified by an adjective, such as “a beautiful book,” here, the book is a noun, and beautiful is an adjective. A noun usually gets modified by an adjective.
Different types of nouns in a sentence
A noun can be used in different types of sentences. But, it is important to know the types of nouns that are used in different contexts and situations.
The two main categories of nouns are plural and singular. A noun can be both singular and plural. A singular noun refers to one single thing or a person, while a plural noun refers to multiple objects or people.
There are several other types as well;
- Common nouns: pencil, book, table
- Proper nouns: Canada, Richard, Nancy, Nile
- Countable nouns: books, chocolates, clothes
- Uncountable nouns: salt, water, sugar
- Abstract nouns: love, happiness, sadness
- Concrete nouns: shoes, bed, table
- Compound nouns: lighthouse, housefly, butterfly
- Collective nouns: group, choir, class
These are the basic types of nouns. There are several others. It is important to know them thoroughly to have a better hold of nouns.