The 8 most important basic grammatical means of the English language

The system of a language is grammar. Different components of a sentence are combined by grammar. The most essential element of grammar is the basic grammatical means.

The basic grammatical means or parts of speech form sentences. That is, we use the basic grammatical means to convey our meanings via speech or writing. We can claim that the basic grammatical means form the most important part of the system of a language.

In English, there are generally eight basic grammatical means as shown in the following. Learning all the basic grammatical means is essential for English mastery. The lack of familiarity with the basic grammatical means causes English learners not to achieve mastery and fluency in the basic English skills.

The basic grammatical means of the English language:

1. Noun

One of the basic grammatical means is nouns. Nouns are used the most in writing, speech, etc. A noun, like a symbol, represents a particular meaning, concept, thing, or person.

As you can see in the below examples, we use this category of the basic grammatical means to mention or name things, places, or people. Some nouns, such as money and love, are uncountable and we can not measure them while some nouns, such as chocolate and car, are countable. This type of basic grammatical means can play one of the following roles in an English sentence:

1. Subject


  1. Maria does not feel well today.
  2. Jack borrowed his friend some money.

2. Direct object


  1. Maria’s father bought her a new expensive car.
  2. She lent some money to her close friend.

3. Indirect object


  1. Jack bought his kids some chocolate.
  2. The students gave their assignments to their strict teacher.

4. Subject complement


  1. I am a university student.
  2. The teacher’s first name is Daniel.

5. Object complement


  1. Trump was elected as the President.
  2. The couple named their son Thomas.

6.  Appositive


  1. Maria’s friend, Lucy, is an international nurse.
  2. Jack’s wife, Catherine, is from England.

7. Adjective


  1. I am interested in reading love stories.
  2. The car race, held last week, was very exciting.

Nouns, as the important basic grammatical means, are considered the largest proportion of English vocabulary. So, they have many types. but, they can generally fit into one of the following categories:

a) Proper nouns

When a noun is capitalized and refers to the specific name of a person, place, or thing, it can be considered as the proper noun. For example, the words “Tina, England, London, God, Old Faithful, etc.” are proper nouns. All the mentioned nouns are recognized specific names so we usually do not put the article “the” before such nouns in English sentences.

b) Common nouns

Common nouns can be called generic nouns since they are used to mention the general group of things, people, places, etc. For example, the words “girls, nouns, items,  rivers, etc.” are all common nouns. This subcategory of the basic grammatical means type itself can be classified into the three following parts:

a) Concrete nouns

Such nouns can be identified through one of the five senses including tasting, touching, sight, hearing, and smell. For example, the words “phone, card, knife, board, etc.” are concrete nouns. We possess special receptive organs to see, hear, smell, measure, touch, and taste such nouns.

b) Abstract nouns

 Abstract nouns can not be perceived through the mentioned five senses. For example, the words “happiness, education, misery, bitterness, honor, courage, etc.” are abstract nouns. Such nouns are very complex since they are the encoded embodiment of certain ideas or concepts.

c) Collective nouns

A collective noun can be a word or phrase referring to a group of people or things as one entity. For example, the words “choir, group, cattle, people, committee, etc.” are collective nouns. Such nouns represent more than one thing or person and are usually treated as singular nouns, however, there are some exceptions in English grammar.

Overall, the largest category of the basic grammatical means is nouns. They are the names of specific or unspecific humans, things, animals, places, etc. The articles, including a the, and an, usually come before the nounscategory except for proper nouns and general singular or plural nouns. This category of the basic grammatical means came in different types as mentioned the most important ones in this part.

2. Pronoun

This category of basic grammatical means is used as substitutes for nouns to avoid repetition in English sentences. In English, there is always one pronoun as an equivalence to a certain noun. This category of the basic grammatical means come in eight main types including:

1. Personal pronouns


  1. Maria told him the truth.
  2. She received his messages.

2. Antecedents


  1. The sign was so small that I could not see it.
  2. The group accomplished the task so soon and the teacher gave them bonus marks.

3. Relative Pronouns


  1. The blonde girl who is wearing a purple dress is Mr. Smith’s daughter.
  2. My car which I bought the last fifteen years still runs very well.

4. Demonstrative Pronouns


  1. I want to buy a car as beautiful as that.
  2. Those are not geese, they are ducks.

5. Indefinite Pronouns


  1. Everyone in the class must give in his assignment in time.
  2. For such a desperate girl, every day is the same as the other days.

6. Reflexive and Intensive Pronouns


  1. Lucy made herself a delicious ca weekend.
  2. This category of the basic grammatical means itself is composed of essential subcategories.

7. Possessive Pronouns


  1. The students are working on their projects.
  2. Sarah is practicing her presentation.

8. Interrogative Pronouns


  1. What is your nationality?
  2. Whose shirt is that?

To sum up, all the right-mentioned types of pronouns can come instead of a noun in English sentences to make texts easier to read and understand. Learning to use this type of basic grammatical means properlyis as important as learning to use nouns in English sentences. If you misuse pronouns, especially personal ones, you will sound offensive.

3. Adjective

 Adjectives are one of the basic grammatical means describing or modifying the nouns or pronouns they proceed with. This category of basic grammatical means is used toprovide more information about the nouns or pronouns to make writing more vivid and readable. They are the right types of adjectives in English grammar as follows:

1. Quantitative:


  1.  I have three sisters.
  2.   I have no choice.
  3.  She read the whole book last week.

2. Proper:


  1. She wants to know about the American lifestyle.
  2. MC Donald sandwiches are very popular.
  3. The Chinese restaurant is selling strange delicious foods.

3. Demonstrative:


  1. I like that dress.
  2. These Pekin ducks are so cute.
  3. This is one of my close friends.

4. Possessive:


  1. Scarlett’s close friend is Susan.
  2. Maria’s handwriting is beautiful.
  3. I love my university major.

5. Interrogative:


  1. Which page are you reading?
  2. What dish do you like the most?
  3. Whose car is this?

6. Indefinite:


  1. She bought some chocolates for her little students.
  2.  Several experienced employees were hired by the company.
  3. Each category of the basic grammatical means has its features.

7. Descriptive:


  1. The beautiful girl was wearing her pink dress at the party.
  2. The generous rich man died of cancer
  3. Maria’s good behavior made her the most popular clerk.

8. Articles


  1. The blonde girl is very gorgeous.
  2. Can you please give me a pencil?
  3. Jack bought an umbrella.

In general, adjectives are independent units coming before the other part of the basic grammatical means which are nouns. They do not modify the other basic grammatical means. This category of basic grammatical means can be called the “describing words”.

4. Verb

The most important part of a sentence is the verb. This type of basic grammatical means is a word or group of words conveying an action, an occurrence, or a state of being. As the following examples indicate, the form of English verbs depends on many factors such as the antecedents they are referring to, the tense (past, present, future) they are used in, the type of action they are modifying, etc.

  • My father went to the drugstore last night.
  •  She was reading the story last night.
  • Teaching the basic grammatical means is very crucial and necessary.
  • The office closes at 10:00 p.m.
  • I am eating lunch now.
  • You should come to the party this week.
  • The students are going to review the basic grammatical means rules for the next session.
  • They are from England.

Learning the principles, rules, and features of this basic grammatical means is somehow difficult. It requires much practice and practice, especially when it came to learning irregular and regular verbs. The present and past tense forms of the irregular verbs, such as go, drive, read, swim, etc, must be memorized since they are the same or different from their stems while the past and past participle forms of regular verbs, such as like, prefer, select, etc., ends with _d or _ed.

In English, there are four types of verbs including intransitive, transitive, linking, and passive. Both transitive and intransitive verbs express action but intransitive verbs, unlike transitive ones, do not take objects. English sentences are sometimes in the passive voice; in this case, the passive verbs, which can be considered as transitive verbs, indicate the subject is the receiver of a certain action. In English sentences, linking verbs link the subject with a compliment or another type of basic grammatical means which can be an adjective, a noun, or a noun phrase.

1. Intransitive


  1. She ran in the race swiftly.
  2. Mr. Smith traveled to Japan last year.

2. Transitive


  1. Please tell me the truth.
  2. Paul put the dishes on the table.

3. Linking


  1. Mr. White is a lawyer.
  2. I feel bored today.

4. Passive


  1. The letter is written by Jack.
  2. The novel must be completely read by the students.

Overall, the core of a sentence is its verb indicating the type of action, tense, etc. Verbs are an important part of the basic grammatical means coming in the four mentioned four types. This category of basic grammatical means encompasses a wide varietyof special forms agreeing on the person, gender, and so on.

5. Adverb

Adverbs are words or expressions modifying another basic grammatical means including a verb, adjective, another adverb, determiner, clause, preposition, and sentence. This category of the basic grammatical means is used to denote manner, place, time, frequency, degree, level of certainty, etc. In the following example, the word “always” is the adverb of frequency, “night” is the adverb of time, “carefully” is the adverb of manner, “therefore” is a conductive adverb, “quite” is the adverb of degree, and “class” is the adverb of place.

  • Maria always studies her lessons at night carefully; therefore, she participates quite well in her class.

In general, this category of basic grammatical means can be omitted in English sentences without harming the syntax. Adverbs, like adjectives, are used to add more information and description. There are six types, as indicated in the above example, in this category of the basic grammatical means.

6. Preposition

Prepositions indicate relationships between other words basic grammatical means. ESL learners need to memorize and keep certain types of prepositions not to make grammatical errors. As you can see in the below examples, this type of basic grammatical means is used to denote a certain time, direction, place, agency, instrument, or verb.

  • I usually get up late in the morning.
  • Please do not call me when I am at work.
  • Maria lives in the USA.
  • You should know how to use the basic grammatical means correctly in an English sentence.
  • Not sleeping at night well makes you feel tired and bored the next day.
  • Jack is standing at the gate of the school.
  • The mother ordered her son to draw on the wall.
  • The family is going to travel to London.
  • Harry Potter book is written by J.K. Rowling.
  • I usually go to work by bus.
  • I am going to study in the library.
  • In English, there are eight basic grammatical means.

On the whole, this type of basic grammatical means usually proceeds with the complements they are modifying. They unite the different components of a sentence. They denote the temporal, spatial, or logical relationships between the other basic grammatical means in an English sentence

7. Conjunction

A conjunction is a part of the basic grammatical means connecting words, phrases, or clauses. This basic grammatical means category is not the same as prepositions since conjunctions can relate to a series of short, simplistic sentences in a long well-organized sentence. The idiomatic expressions such as “as well as”, “the truth of nature, and the power of giving interest”, and ” provided that” belong to this category of the basic grammatical means.


  • Both verbs and nouns are the basic grammatical means in English, and they play a huge role in English grammar; therefore, we should learn and keep these two types of basic grammatical means by heart.
  • When Peter came home, the phone rang; then, he pick up the phone immediately and responded coldly.
  • Most people, whether young or old, got depressed when the coronavirus began to spread too rapidly in the world.
  • Sarah will likely fail her grammar test unless she studies the basic grammatical means part completely and carefully.

Coordinating, subordinating, and correlative connections are the three types of this category of basic grammatical means. The words “for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so” are coordinating connections. Correlative Conjunctions are “both/and, either/or, neither/nor, not only/but, whether/or”; and the words “that, then, though, till, unless, until, when, whenever, where, whereas, after, although, as, and while” are some of the examples of the subordinating conjunctions.

In English, we can use this type of basic grammatical means to make complex, compound_complex, and compound sentences. this type of basic grammatical means helps us to avoid using short simple sentences too much. A conjunction can come in the beginning, ending, or middle of an English sentence.

8. Interjection

Interjection, as a part of the basic grammatical means, are the words or expressions denoting spontaneous feelings or reactions in informal writings and speeches. The words such as “ouch!, wow!, curses! damM-they be, oka, oh! M-hm, huh? stop! cool! and um” are some of these basic grammatical means types.

This part of the basic grammatical means is not used on formal occasions. Interjections can be put inside parentheses or be set off with commas. The key point about this of the basic grammatical means is that setting an interjection off, whether by an exclamation mark or another maseparatearating the conjunction from the other components of an English sentence is necessary.


Overall, grammar, as a system of language, has certain practical devices known as the basic grammatical means forming the components of a sentence. There are generally eight categories of the basic grammatical means in English, and each category is composed of a certain subject, Andes; and the most important and the most difficult category of the basic grammatical means is “verbs” that takes on many certain forms under different circumstances. Master of the basic grammatical means enables you to perform well in formal or informal occasions, in speech or writing, fluently and correctly


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