Basic Grammar Guide

From Apertium
Revision as of 18:28, 2 January 2012 by Dtvrij74 (talk | contribs) (→‎Verbs)
Jump to navigation Jump to search


This guide will introduce you to the basics of grammar. It will go into detail on the basic parts-of-speech.


A noun is a person, place, thing, or idea. A proper noun names a specific person, place, or thing, and is almost always capitalized. Some examples include America, Microsoft, Buddhism, and President. Common nouns are everything else that is not a proper noun. They are not usually capitalized in English.

In some languages such as German, most nouns, regardless of if they're proper nouns or common nouns, are capitalized.

When referring to more than one instance of a noun, one must use the plural form of the noun. For most nouns, -s is added to form the plural. In words ending in -sh, -ch, -s, -ss, -x, or -o, the plural is formed by adding -es to the end of the noun. There are also other rules about forming the plural. Some words are irregular nouns, meaning that they do not follow any specific rules when pluralized. Examples include woman (two women), ox (two oxen), and goose (two geese).

A noun phrase is a group of words that act as a noun. In the sentence "The intimidating and apathetic guard opened the gate", "the intimidating and apathetic guard" can be substituted with the pronoun "he".

The Apertium part-of-speech tag for nouns is n


A verb is a word that shows action or state of being. Every sentence must have a verb. Verbs often change forms depending on person, voice, tense, mood, and are sometimes accompanied by model verbs (could, should, would) and auxiliary verbs (do, have).

Verb conjugation also causes a verb to change. Verb conjugation is creating a derived form of a verb according to grammatical categories such as person, voice, tense, mood, gender, etc. Verb conjugation is not present in every language.

A verb phrase is a group of words that express action or state of being. In the sentence "I am currently learning how to cook", "am currently learning" expresses a state of being.

The Apertium part-of-speech tag for verbs is usually vblex


Adjectives modify the noun or pronoun by describing, identifying, or quantifying it. In English, an adjective precedes the noun it modifies (an interesting book), whereas in other languages such as French, most adjectives follow the noun it modifies (un livre interessant). Adjectives may change depending on gender, or other grammatical categories.

An adjective/adjectival phrase is a group of words that modify a noun. In the sentence "the hotel was old, smelly, and located in a dangerous neighborhood", "old, smelly, and located in a dangerous neighborhood" describes "the hotel".

The Apertium part-of-speech tag for adjectives is adj


Adverbs modify verbs and other parts of speech that are not nouns (adjectives modify nouns). Adverbs and adverbial clauses often answer questions such as Where?, When?, and Why (what caused this)?

An adverbial clause is a group of words, containing a subject and verb, that acts as an adverb. An example would be "I locked the door before I left".

The Apertium part-of-speech tag for adverbs is adv