The structure of the clause depends on the verb. For example:

  • An intransitive verb has the structure: N(=noun) + V(=verb): (John) + (smiled).
  • A transitive verb has the structure: N + V + N: (We) + (had been playing) + (football)
  • A link verb has the structure: N + V + Adj : (She) + (looked) + (happy)
  • A phrasal verb has the structure: N + V + pa(=particle) + N (She) + (gave) +(back) + (the money)
    or N + V + N + pa (She) + (gave) + (the money) + (back)

Particles can be either adverbs or prepositions. For a more detailed explanation of phrasal verbs, see our two- and three-part word and Multi-word verbs pages.

 Exercise

Section: 

Comments

Hello dear team,
You said
“N + V + N + p (She) + (gave) + (the money) + (back)”
N=noun
V=verb
P=?
“p” abbreviation from what?
Thank you very much

Hello fahri,

Sorry for the confusion! In this case, 'p' was an abbreviation for 'particle', but I've changed the abbreviation to 'pa' to help make this clear. I have also added links to other pages that explain how phrasal verbs work in case you have any questions about them.

Thanks very much for helping us improve this page!

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,sir.Please,correct this sentence.
Playing a musical instrument is a great happiness to have.
Can we say to have at the end of the sentence?

Hello Aram1999,

I'm afraid we don't provide a correction service like this. We're happy to provide explanations of the information on our pages and, sometimes, to provide help with other issues. However, we have many thousands of users and cannot provide a checking service of this kind. If we tried then we would end up doing many people's homework and tests for them!

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Dear Sir
Please help me regarding the following.
It is me/him.(accepted correct if not please correct it)
If I want to change the above to plural for example I want to use the object pronoun 'them' instead of me/him how I am going to write it.
Please help!
Thank you.
Andrew international

Hello Andrew international,

The correct form would be

It is them.

The only context in which we would use this would be when the identity of a group surprises us. For example, if we saw a group of people who we did not expect to see and exclaimed 'It's them!' in the sense of 'Look who it is!'

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

 

What does P stand for

Hello Arsalan.Pakistani,

The abbreviation 'P' stands for 'preposition'.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello,

''I'll wait for you until you've finished cleaning''
In this case, the subordinate clause ends first and then the main follows.

I often find this kind of structures. For example,
A main clause has a future tense and a subordinate has present perfect. Therefore, the subordinate clause happens first. For instance, ''I will make sure that you have played hokey and been in Paris''

My question is: Would it be the same if I used future unreal in a main clause?

''It would be strange to see what Jack's played''

''I wouldn't want somebody pointing to all the mistakes I've made''

What will be different if past simple is used instead?

Than you.

Hello JamlMakav,

The rules for tense use here follow normal use - i.e. they are used according to the action being described. You can use past simple if the event is a completed past event, just as in any other sentence:

I wouldn't want somebody pointing to all the mistakes I've made.

This describes the mistakes made in the speaker's life up to the moment of speaking - unfinished past time.

I wouldn't want somebody pointing to all the mistakes I made,

This describes the mistakes made in the speaker's life in a particular past time period (last week, when he/she was a child etc) - finished past time.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

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