Other parts of speech

In addition to the seven primary parts of speech—nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, and conjunctions—there are several classes of words that have unique grammatical functions but do not fit neatly into a single specific category. They often share characteristics with one or more other parts of speech, but do not properly belong to the same class.
We’ll give a brief introduction to these other parts of speech below; continue on to their individual sections to learn more about each.


A particle is a word that does not have semantic meaning on its own, but instead relies on the word it is paired with to have meaning. It is very similar to a preposition—in fact, they are almost always identical in appearance. However, prepositions are used to establish a relationship between their objects and another part of a sentence, while particles are only used to create infinitives and to form certain phrasal verbs.


There are three grammatical articles: the, a, and an (though a and an are sometimes considered a single article with two forms).
The definite article the is used to identify a specific or unique person, place, or thing, while the indefinite articles a and an identify nonspecific or generic people, places, or things.


Determiners are used to introduce a noun or noun phrase and give determining information about it. Determiners often behave similarly to adjectives in that they modify the noun they precede, but they differ in how they signal that a noun will follow.


Gerunds are nouns that are formed from verbs. They are identical in appearance to present participles (the base form of the verb + “-ing”).
Because they function as nouns, gerunds can be subjects or objects, and they can also act as adjective complements.


Interjections are words, phrases, or sounds used to convey emotions such as surprise, excitement, happiness, or anger. They are grammatically unrelated to any other part of a sentence, so they are set apart by commas. They are also often used alone as minor sentences.

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