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Preview: About.com Grammar & Composition: Most Popular Articles

About.com Grammar & Composition: Most Popular Articles



These articles are the most popular over the last month.



Published: Mon, 13 Mar 2017 12:07:51 +0000

 



What Are the Top 20 Figures of Speech?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Though there are hundreds of figures of speech, here we'll focus on just 20 of the most common figures.



A List of 26 Common Suffixes in English (With...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Understanding the meanings of the common suffixes can help us deduce the meanings of new words that we encounter.



400 Topic Suggestions for Essays and Speeches

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Coming up with a good topic can be one of the hardest parts of composing an essay. These 400 topic suggestions should make that job a little easier.



13 Engaging Ways to Begin an Essay

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

There's more than one way to write a good introductory paragraph. Here are 13 opening strategies with examples from a wide range of professional writers.



5 Delightful Examples of Descriptive Paragraphs

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

These five paragraphs--three by students, two by professional writers--respond to the guidelines in the project How to Write a Descriptive Paragraph.



What Are Present and Past Participial Phrases...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A participial phrase is a word group consisting of a present or past participle and any modifiers, objects, and complements.



What Is a Thesis Statement?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A thesis statement is a sentence in an essay, report, or speech that identifies the main idea and/or central purpose of the text.



What Are Homonyms?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Homonyms are two or more words that have the same sound or spelling but differ in meaning.



What Is Discourse Analysis?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Discourse analysis is the study of the ways in which language is used in texts and contexts.



Definition and Examples of Kernel Sentences in...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In transformational grammar, a kernel sentence is a simple declarative construction with only one verb.



Vocabulary Building With Common English Prefixes

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Understanding the meanings of the common prefixes can help us deduce the meanings of new words. This table defines and illustrates 35 common prefixes.



Suffixes in English Grammar

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A suffix is a letter or group of letters added to the end of a word or root, serving to form a new word or functioning as an inflectional ending.



Definitions and Examples of the Eight Parts of...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Part of speech is a traditional term for one of the eight categories into which words are classified according to their functions in sentences.



Affirmative Sentences in English Grammar

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Affirmative sentence is a traditional grammatical term for any statement that is positive, not negative.



What Are Inflectional Morphemes?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In English morphology, an inflectional morpheme is a suffix that's added to a word to assign a particular grammatical property to that word.



Tell Me Now What Imperative Sentences Are

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An imperative sentence gives advice or instructions or expresses a request or command. Read these examples of imperative sentences.



50 Topic Suggestions for a Narrative Paragraph,...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

At least one of these 50 topic suggestions should remind you of an incident that you can recount in a clearly organized narrative essay or speech.



What Are Metaphors?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

We speak and write and think in metaphors every day. They can't be avoided: metaphors are baked into our language. Here are some memorable examples.



What Is a Figure of Speech?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In common usage, a figure of speech is the opposite of a literal expression. In rhetoric, it's a type of figurative language, such as metaphor and hyperbole.



Transferred Epithets in English Grammar

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A transferred epithet is a figure of speech in which an adjective grammatically qualifies a noun other than the person or thing it's actually describing.



Do You Want to Compose a Compelling Descriptive...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

For ideas on how to compose a descriptive paragraph or essay, spend some time studying these guidelines, topic suggestions, exercises, and readings.



Observations on the Nature of Language

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Language is a human system of communication that uses arbitrary signals, such as voice sounds, gestures, or written symbols.



What Are Clauses in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A clause is a group of words that contains a subject and a predicate. A clause is either independent or dependent.



What Are Declarative Sentences in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A declarative sentence is a sentence in the form of a statement (in contrast to a command, a question, or an exclamation).



What Is a Preposition in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A preposition is a word that indicates the relationship between a noun or pronoun and other words in a sentence.



100 Awfully Good Oxymorons

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Oxymorons are often found in literature, but as shown by this list of 100 awfully good examples, they are also part of our everyday speech.



Process Analysis in Composition: Guidelines and...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Process analysis is a method of paragraph or essay development by which a writer explains step by step how something is done or how to do something.



Organizational Strategies: Chronological Order

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In composition, chronological order is a method of organization in which actions or events are presented as they occur (or occurred) in time.



What Is a Compound Sentence?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A compound sentence is a sentence that contains at least two independent clauses.



What Are the Consonant Sounds and Letters in...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A consonant is a letter of the alphabet that represents a speech sound produced by a constriction of the speech organs.



A List of Common Subordinating Conjunctions...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A subordinating conjunction is a conjunction (a connecting word or phrase) that introduces a dependent clause, joining it to a main clause.



What Is Narration in Composition and Speech?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In writing or speech, narration is the process of recounting a sequence of events, real or imagined.



Sentence Combining: An Alternative to...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Sentence combining, an alternative to traditional grammar instruction, involves joining two or more short sentences to make one longer sentence.



The Basic Parts and Structures of English...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

One of the keys to good writing is understanding the countless ways in which basic sentence structures can be combined and arranged.



What Are Derivational Morphemes?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In morphology, a derivational morpheme is an affix that's added to a word to create a new word or a new form of a word.



What Are Complex Sentences in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A complex sentence is a sentence that contains an independent clause and at least one dependent clause.



What Are Morphemes in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A morpheme is a meaningful linguistic unit (a word or a word element) that cannot be divided into smaller meaningful parts.



Observations on Morphology, the Study of Word...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Morphology is the branch of linguistics (and one of the major components of grammar) that studies word structures, especially in terms of morphemes.



How Do You Define a Sentence?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A sentence is the largest independent unit of grammar: it begins with a capital letter and ends with a period, question mark, or exclamation point.



Introductory Paragraphs: Examples and Guidelines

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An introductory paragraph is the opening paragraph in a conventional essay or composition.



33 Types of Logical Fallacies

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A logical fallacy is an error in reasoning that renders an argument invalid.



50 Topic Suggestions for an Essay Developed by...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

These 50 prompts are meant to help you discover a topic for an essay or speech developed by process analysis.



99 Metaphors for Love

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

As this rich collection of 99 metaphors demonstrates, love has been compared to everything from a jewel to an exploding cigar.



Types of Word Formation in English

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In linguistics, word-formation refers to the ways in which new words are made on the basis of other words or morphemes.



Prefixes in English Grammar

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A prefix is a letter or group of letters attached to the beginning of a word that partly indicates its meaning.



Definition and Examples of Dependent Clauses in...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A dependent clause is a group of words that has both a subject and a verb but (unlike an independent clause) cannot stand alone as a sentence.



What Are the Characteristics of Academic Writing?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Academic writing refers to the forms of expository prose used by researchers to convey a body of information about a particular subject.



What Are Simple Sentences in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A simple sentence is a sentence with only one independent clause.



What Is Polysemy?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Polysemy is the association of one word with two or more distinct meanings.



What Is Expository Writing?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Expository writing is a pedagogical term for any form of writing that conveys information and explains ideas.



I Love Exclamatory Sentences!

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An exclamatory sentence is a sentence that expresses strong feelings by making an exclamation.



What Is the Meaning of 'Discourse'?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In linguistics, discourse refers to a unit of language longer than a single sentence. More broadly, it means the use of spoken or written language in a social context.



The Derivations of Words

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In morphology, derivation is the process of creating a new word out of an old word, usually by adding a prefix or a suffix.



Examples of Cause and Effect in Paragraphs and...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Cause and effect is a method of essay development in which a writer analyzes the reasons for (or the consequences of) an action, event or decision.



Organizational Strategies: Spatial Order

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In composition, spatial order is a method of organization in which details are presented as they are (or were) located in space.



What Is a Rhetorical Situation?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A rhetorical situation is the context of a rhetorical act, made up (at a minimum) of a rhetor, an issue (or exigence), a medium, and an audience.



What Are Modal Auxiliaries in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A modal (or modal auxiliary) is a verb that combines with another verb to indicate mood or tense.



What Are Regular Verbs in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A regular verb is a verb that forms its past tense and past participle by adding -d or -ed to the base form.



Direct Speech: How to Quote Someone Directly in...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Direct speech is a report of the exact words used by a speaker or writer.



Advice on Selecting a Topic for an Essay or...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A topic is the particular issue or idea that serves as the subject of a paragraph, essay, report, or speech.



What Is Communication?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages through verbal and/or nonverbal means.



When Do We Use the Simple Past Tense in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

The simple past tense is a verb tense indicating action that occurred in the past and which does not extend into the present.



What Is English Composition?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Definitions, discussions, and examples of written compositions in English.



What Are Subordinate Clauses in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A subordinate clause is a group of words that has both a subject and a verb but (unlike an independent clause) cannot stand alone as a sentence.



What Is an Adverb in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An adverb is the part of speech (or word class) primarily used to modify a verb, adjective, or other adverb.



Personal Letters: Examples and Writing Guidelines

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A personal letter is a type of letter (or informal composition) that usually concerns personal matters and is sent from one individual to another.



How to Develop a Problem-Solution Essay

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In composition, a method for analyzing and writing about a topic by identifying a problem and proposing one or more solutions.



What Are Bound Morphemes in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A bound morpheme is a morpheme (or word element), usually a prefix or suffix, that cannot stand alone as a word.



What Is Speech-Act Theory?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Speech-act theory is a subfield of pragmatics concerned with the ways in which words can be used not only to present information but also to carry out actions.



What Is Affixation—and How Can You Use It...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In linguistics, affixation is the process of adding a morpheme to a word to create either (a) a different form of that word, or (b) a new word.



Description in Composition

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In composition, description is a rhetorical strategy using sensory details to portray a person, place, or object.



What Are Verbs in English and How Do We Use Them?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A verb is the part of speech (or word class) that describes an action or occurrence or indicates a state of being.



What Are Consonant Clusters in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A consonant cluster is a group of two or more consonant sounds that come before, after, or between vowels.



Indirect Speech: How to Quote Someone...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Indirect speech is a report on what someone else said or wrote without using that person's exact words.



50 Topic Suggestions for a Cause-and-Effect...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Some of the following topic suggestions emphasize causes; others focus on effects. But keep in mind that these two approaches are closely related.



55 Examples of Metaphors--With Definitions

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A metaphor is a figure of speech in which an implicit comparison is made between two unlike things that actually have something in common.



What Are Figures of Speech?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

The figures of speech are the various rhetorical uses of language that depart from customary construction, word order, or significance.



What Is a Gerund in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Definition A gerund



What Are Coordinating Conjunctions in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A coordinating conjunction is a conjunction that joins two similarly constructed and/or syntactically equal words or phrases or clauses.



What Are Homophones?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Homophones are two or more words that are pronounced the same but differ in meaning, origin, and often spelling.



40 Topic Suggestions for a Descriptive...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Descriptive writing calls for close attention to details. To help you get started here are 40 topic suggestions for a descriptive paragraph or essay.



Examples of Effective Topic Sentences

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A topic sentence is a sentence, sometimes at the beginning of a paragraph, that states or suggests the main idea (or topic) of a passage.



Is This an Interrogative Sentence?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An interrogative sentence is a sentence that asks a question.



Examples of Different Types of Outlines in...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An outline is a plan for--or a summary of--a writing project or speech.



What Is a Speech Act?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In linguistics, a speech act is an utterance defined in terms of a speaker's intentions and the effects it has on a listener.



What Is a Compound-Complex Sentence?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A compound-complex sentence is a sentence with two or more independent clauses and at least one dependent clause.



What Are Present and Past Participles in...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In traditional English grammar, a participle is a verbal that typically ends in -ing (the present participle) or -ed (the past participle).



What Are Vowels and Vowel Sounds in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A vowel is a letter of the alphabet that represents a speech sound created by the relatively free passage of breath through the larynx and oral cavity.



Extended Definitions in Essays and Speeches

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In a paragraph, essay, or speech, an extended definition is an explanation and/or illustration of a word, thing, or concept.



'Whack at Your Reader at Once': How to Begin...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >In "The Writing



What Are Hyponyms in English?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In linguistics, hyponym is a term used to designate a particular member of a broader class.



The Rules of Subject-Verb Agreement in English

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

Subject-verb agreement is the correspondence of a verb with its subject in person and number.



40 Topic Suggestions for a Comparison and...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

These 40 topic suggestions for a comparison and contrast essay should serve as starting points to help you discover some fresh ideas on your own.



What Is Linguistic Register?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A register is one of the many styles or varieties of language determined by such factors as social occasion, purpose, and audience.



Writing Summaries: Guidelines and Examples

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A summary is a shortened version of a text that highlights its key points.



What Are Diphthongs?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

In phonetics, a diphthong is a vowel in which there is a noticeable sound change within the same syllable.



What Are the Characteristics of a Good...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

An introduction is the opening of an essay or speech. Typically it identifies the topic, arouses interest, and prepares for the development of the thesis.



50 Examples of Blended Words

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A blend is a word formed by merging the sounds and meanings of two or more other words.



60 Writing Suggestions for an Extended...

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

These 60 topic suggestions for an extended definition essay can be developed in various ways and from different points of view.



What Are Function Words in English Grammar?

2017-03-13T12:07:51Z

A function word is a word that expresses a grammatical or structural relationship with other words in a sentence.