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Parts of Speech

Learn more about English parts of speech, such as prepositions and articles, to help you become a more confident writer.

Noun

"A word that refers to a person, place, thing, event, substance or quality: 'Doctor', 'tree', 'party', 'coal' and 'beauty' are all nouns" (Cambridge University Press, n.d.-c, para. 1).

Types of nouns

Collective nouns

"A noun that describes a group of things or people as a unit. 'Family' and 'flock are examples of collective nouns" (Cambridge University Press, n.d.-a, para. 1).

Countable nouns

"A noun that can be used in the singular and the plural" (Cambridge University Press, n.d.-b, para. 1). For example, cat, dog, tree, spoon.

Uncountable nouns

"A noun that has one form with no plural and names something that there can be more or less of but that cannot be counted" (Cambridge University Press, n.d.-d, para. 1). For example, weather, happiness, relaxation, education.

For more information regarding nouns (both countable and uncountable), including self-test exercises, please refer to The OWL at Purdue: Count and NonCount Nouns (with Plurals, Articles, and Quantity Words) and The OWL at Purdue: Count and NonCount Nouns (with Articles and Adjectives).

For information on how to make nouns possessive, please see PossessivesPlural Possessives, and ApostropheOnce you've reviewed those resources, if you'd like to practice your understanding of the possessive case, please visit Forming the Possessive Case.

References

Cambridge University Press. (n.d.-a). Collective noun. Cambridge dictionary. Retrieved February 24, 2021, from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/collective-noun

Cambridge University Press. (n.d.-b). Count noun. Cambridge dictionary. Retrieved February 24, 2021, from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/count-noun

Cambridge University Press. (n.d.-c). Noun. Cambridge dictionary. Retrieved February 24, 2021, from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/noun?q=noun+

Cambridge University Press. (n.d.-d). Uncountable noun. Cambridge dictionary. Retrieved February 24, 2021, from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/uncountable-noun