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ROSS'S BUSINESS ENGLISH

THE PARTS OF SPEECH

NOUNS

A noun is a word used to name something.

CLASSIFICATION OF NOUNS

A common noun is a name that applies to all objects of the same class:

The firm carries a full line of boots, shoes, hats, and caps.

He saw in the window a box of paper, a book, some pens, a puzzle, and some magazines.

A proper noun is the name of a particular person, place, or thing:

James and John visited Chicago. While there they stayed at the Sherman Hotel.

A proper noun should always begin with a capital letter.

Exercise 1

Classify the italicized nouns in the following sentences. Rewrite, capitalizing proper nouns :

1. The course consists of the study of grammar, arithmetic, penmanship, bookkeeping, and law.

2. We read in our histories of the landing of the pilgrims.

3. The congregation was in tears.
4. England has a large army and a powerful navy.

5. George Washington was the first president of the united states.

6. Each man must take his turn.

7. He received a letter from j. s. browning, bowling green, kentucky.

8. We were talking with senator johnson.

9. A book entitled the panama canal has been written by frederic j. haskin.

10. It is the duty of the united states to establish and maintain a government in cuba, of some sort, as much as it is her duty to maintain a similar government in alaska or missouri.

CLASSIFICATION OF COMMON NOUNS

Common nouns are divided into four classes : abstract, collective, verbal, and class.

An abstract noun is the name of a quality, condition, or an action, considered abstractly: that is, apart from its natural connection :

He rendered valuable assistance in the preparation of the manuscript.

He is a man of academic wisdom.

Necessity is the certain connection between cause and effect.

The greatest pleasure I know is to do a good action by stealth, and to have it found out by accident.

Most abstract nouns are derived from other parts of speech; as, assistance from assist; preparation from prepare; wisdom from wise; necessity from necessary; pleasure from please; action from act.

Exercise 2

Tell from what word each of the following abstract nouns is derived :

judgment justice simplicity unity infancy

patriotism
length
belief
service
patience

brotherhood
agency
imagination
partnership
occupation

wisdom choice deceit manhood freedom

Form abstract nouns from the following words : move high king

see speak red wide

brave thieve stupid regular

noble serve child deceive

relieve prudent master

friend

honest

A collective noun is the name of a collection of persons or things :

The congregation was in tears.
The shepherd was tending his flock.
The committee is ready to report.
The fleet returned to Spain.

Exercise 3

Name collective nouns that will embrace groups of each of the following individual nouns: horse bird fish

pupil bee soldier book

ship ruffian worshiper man

sheep

A verbal noun is a noun ending in ing that is the name of an action or of a state of being :

Walking is healthful exercise.
He spread his blessing over the land.
There is no time for such reasonings.
Do you insist on our keeping the goods?

It should be noted that these words do not express action, but are the names of actions. Compare these two sentences :

(Expressing action) Mary is singing an old song. (Naming action) Mary's singing is very sweet.

Exercise 4

Tell whether the italicized nouns are abstract, collective, or verbal :

I. Your goodness must have some edge to it-else it is none.

2. It was the boy's lying that enraged the teacher.

3. Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

4. The jury's finding for the plaintiff was a surprise to all.

5. The herd was quietly grazing.
6. Victory is born of endurance.
7. We know that he will succeed in his undertaking.
8. The committee considered him for a director.
9. The singing of the nightingale is a great treat.
10. England's strength lies in her navy.
II. Yachting is a pleasant pastime.

. 12. A committee is a miniature assembly. 13. The army was delayed by the burning of the bridges. 14. Kindness is commendable.

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