Position of nouns in sentences: Grammar + quick exercises

by Johnny Jacks
A noun in English serves as a word or phrase that denotes a person, object, event, place, concept, or activity. In this instructional lesson, Monkey will guide you through the usage and placement of nouns in sentences.

Noun Placement in a Sentence

The position of a noun within a sentence imparts distinct characteristics and usage. Below, Monkey will provide a detailed analysis of these positions, accompanied by specific examples for easy comprehension.

1. At the Beginning of a Sentence

When a noun appears at the outset of a sentence, it functions as the subject. In some instances, the subject noun may follow an adverb of time (e.g., tomorrow, now, today).

Example: “Eventually, he came.” Translation: “She came at last.”

2. After Articles (a/an/the)

Nouns can follow articles like “a,” “an,” or “the” within a sentence. The noun need not be immediately adjacent to the article; there may be additional modifiers to describe the noun.

Example: “Linda is a beautiful girl.” Translation: “Linda is a beautiful girl.”

3. Following Possessive Adjectives (‘s)

After possessive adjectives (e.g., my, his, her, our, their, your, its), a noun is always present in the possessive form (‘s). Adjectives can be inserted between the noun and the possessive adjective to describe the noun further.

Example: “Jenny’s travel was delayed because of heavy rain.” Translation: “Jenny’s trip was postponed due to heavy rain.”

4. After Determiners

Determiners like “this,” “that,” “these,” “those,” “both,” “every,” “each,” “a little,” “little,” “a few,” “few,” etc., can be followed by a noun. Adjectives may also be inserted between determiners and nouns to modify the noun.

Example: “Every student in this class is obedient.” Every student in this class is very obedient.”

5. Following Prepositions

Within a sentence, a noun can occupy the position following a preposition, such as “in,” “on,” “at,” or “for.”

Example: “They offer a variety of services.” “They provide many kinds of services.”

READ MORE:  Simple future and near future details + exercises

6. After Verbs

A noun that comes after a verb functions as the object of the sentence.

Example: “She likes English.” Translation: “She likes English.”

7. Following Adjectives

In contrast to a noun following a possessive adjective as the subject, a noun following an adjective often acts as the complement of the sentence.

Example: “This is his new book.” “These are his new books.”

Exercises on Noun Positions

The following exercises on noun positions will aid readers in comprehending and retaining the theory previously shared by Monkey. Please attempt the exercises before checking the answers.

Exercise 1: Identify the Position According to the Function Below of the Underlined Noun in the Following Sentences:

  • Subject
  • Direct Object
  • Indirect Object
  • Object of Preposition
  • Appositive
  • Subjective Complement
  • Objective Complement
  1. The jury found the defendant guilty.
  2. What is Joe doing on his birthday?
  3. On the day after tomorrow, we will hand Jerry the keys to his new car.
  4. The screen on my monitor seems dull.
  5. The committee named MacKenzie its CEO.
  6. Smith is a good friend to Jones.
  7. In the driveway sat two old cars.
  8. My cousin Jerry prides himself on his collection of ancient marbles.
  9. Bertrand may be nice, but he is also my enemy.
  10. The Great Gatsby is my favorite novel by Fitzgerald.

Exercise 2: Complete the Sentences with Appropriate Nouns Based on the Given Words

1. Her …………. in helping the poor earned her admiration in the neighbourhood. (SELF)

2. The …………………….. of his work lies in the materials he uses. (ORIGIN)

3. After two months of laser treatment I noticed a tiny …………………….. and felt a stab of determination. (IMPROVE)

4. I don’t want my kids to spend their young years under constant…………….. to be the best. (PRESS)

5. My grandma died a natural …………. (DIE)

6. Dreams are like stars, you may never touch them, but if you follow them, they will lead you to your …………. (DESTINE)

7. A sense of ………… makes a girl beautiful. (HUMOUROUS)

8. The person who gives you unexplained happiness is the one who gives you unexplained………… (SAD)

9. Harry Styles is the ………….. man, got bags of charm, can win people over easily. (LADY)

READ MORE:  Tips to practice speaking English through pictures for children correctly

10. Though Monsters has a great storyline younger ………………may be confused as some facts are never explained. (VIEW)

Exercise 3: Select Singular or Plural Nouns to Match the Sentences

1. There are a lot of beautiful _____. (A. trees/ B. trees)

2. There are two _____ in the shop. (A. women/B. woman)

3. Do you wear _____? (A. glasses/ B. glass)

4. I don’t like _____. I’m afraid of them. (A. mice/B. mouse)

5. I need a new pair of _____. (A. jeans/jeans)

6. He is married and has two _____. (A. child/ B. children)

7. There was a woman in the car with two _____. (A. man/B. men)

8. How many _____ do you have in your bag? (A. keys/ B. keys)

9. I like your ______. Where did you buy it? (A. trousers/ B. trouser)

10. He put on his _____ and went to bed. (A. pajamas/B. pajamas)

Exercise 4: Select the Correct Noun Form for the Blanks

Some people believe that developments in the field of artificial intelligence will have a positive impact on our lives in the near future. Others, by contrast, are worried that we are not prepared for a world in which computers are more intelligent than humans. Discuss both of these views and give your own opinion.

People seem to be either excited or worried about the future impact of artificial (1-intelligent)………….. I can personally understand the two (2-oppos)………….points of view; I am both fascinated by developments in artificial intelligence and apprehensive about its possible negative effects.

On the one hand, the increasing intelligence of technology should bring some obvious benefits. Machines are clearly able to do many jobs better than humans can, especially in areas that require high levels of (3-accurate)…………or calculations using large amounts of data. For example, robots are being developed that can carry out surgical procedures with greater (4-precise)…………..than a human doctor, and we already have cars that use sensors and cameras to drive themselves. Such technologies can improve safety by reducing the (5-likely)…………..of human errors. It is easy to imagine how these developments, and many others, will steadily improve our quality of life.

On the other hand, I share the concerns of people who believe that artificial intelligence may harm us if we are not careful. In the short term, it is likely that we will see a rise in (6-employ)…………..as workers in various industries are replaced by machines or software programs. For example, self-driving vehicles are expected to cause (7-redundant)…………….in driving jobs, such as lorry drivers, taxi drivers and bus drivers. In the medium term, if intelligent technologies fighting take jobs away from humans, we may find that people become deskilled and lose their sense of purpose in life. A longer term is that computers become so intelligent that they begin to make (8-decide)…………without human fear and without regard for our well-being.

READ MORE:  [Full Level] Future perfect tense exercises

In conclusion, while intelligent machines will no doubt improve our lives in many ways, the potential risks of such technologies should not be ignored.

Answers to exercises

Exercise 1

1. jury = subject

defendant = direct object

guilty = objective complement

6. Smith = subject

friend = subjective complement

Jones = object of preposition

2. What = direct object

Joe = subject

birthday = object of preposition

7. driveway = object of preposition

cars = subject

3. day = object of preposition

tomorrow = object of preposition

we = subject

Jerry = indirect object

winner = appositive

keys = direct object

car = object of preposition

8. cousin = subject

Jerry = appositive

himself = direct object

collection = object of preposition

marbles = object of preposition

4. screen = subject

monitor = object of preposition

dull = subjective complement

9. Bertrand = subject

nice = subjective complement

he = subject

enemy = subjective complement

5. committee = subject

MacKenzie = direct object

CEO = objective complement

10. The Great Gatsby = subject

novel = subjective complement

Fitzgerald = object of preposition

Exercise 2

1. Unselfishness

6. Destination

2. Originality

7. Humour

3. Improvement

8. Sadness

4. Pressure

9. Ladies

5. Death

10. Viewers

Exercise 3

1. trees

6. children

2. women

7. men

3. glasses

8. keys

4. mice

9. pants

5. jeans

10. pajamas

Exercise 4

1. intelligence

5. likelihood

2. oppose

6. unemployment

3. accuracy

7. redundancies

4. precision

8. decisions

So, we have shared all of our knowledge about the placement of nouns in English. Each position has distinct characteristics and identification methods. To help you solidify and retain this knowledge, we’ve provided a range of exercises, from basic to advanced.

Wishing you all successful learning!

Related Posts