· A verb and all its modifiers A clause that can stand alone is called an independent clause. A sentence must have at least one independent clause. But it can also have more than one clause.
Sentence: Jack walked.
The sentence above consists of one independent clause. Jack is the subject of the clause, and walked is the verb. Subjects
The subject is the person or thing that the clause is about. Subjects are always nouns or words acting as nouns. When we refer to the simple subject of a clause, we are pointing to the noun alone. When we refer to the complete subject, we are pointing to the noun and all its modifiers.
Complete subject: Jack, accompanied by his dog Roscoe, walked.
In the example, the group of words accompanied by his dog Roscoe describes something about the subject Jack. So the complete subject is Jack, accompanied by his dog Roscoe.
The verb gives the action of the clause. The verb also tells the time of the action—present, past, or future. A verb can have several parts. All the parts together form the complete verb.
Complete verb: Jack was walking up the hill.
In the example, was walking is the complete verb. It is made up of a main verb (walking) and a helping verb (was). Like a subject, a verb can also have modifiers. In the example, the phrase up the hill modifies the verb was walking because it tells something about the action. A complete verb together with all its modifiers is called the predicate of the sentence.
Predicate: Jack was walking up the hill.
Types of Sentences by Purpose
Sentences can be identified by the purpose they serve. They can be declarative, interrogative, imperative, and exclamatory. Most sentences are declarative. Declarative sentences are statements.
Declarative sentence: Dinosaurs would make great pets.
Interrogative sentences ask a question. Put a question mark at the end of an interrogative sentence. Interrogative sentences often start with a question word: who, what, where, when, how, whom, whose, which.
Interrogative sentence: When will the sales meeting start?
Imperative sentences issue a command or an instruction. The subject of an imperative sentence is always you. The subject you is understood; it is not stated in the sentence.
Imperative sentence: [You] Please hand in your exam papers.
Exclamatory sentences express surprise or strong emotion. An exclamatory sentence ends with an exclamation point.
Exclamatory sentence: I can't believe you ate all that ice cream!
Turning a Declarative Sentence into an Interrogative Sentence
Statements can be turned into questions. You may have to change the word order of the sentence and add a helping verb or a question word. Method 1: If there is a helping verb in the sentence, move it to the start of the statement.
Statement: The office will be closed on Monday.
Question: Will the office be closed on Monday?
Method 2: Add do to the start of the statement. Change the main verb to its present tense form.
Statement: The college arranged for more scholarships to be awarded.
Question: Did the college arrange for more scholarships to be awarded?
Notice that the verb arranged becomes arrange when did is added. Method 3: Change the subject to who, what, or which, or use whose to start the question.
Statement: This photo is the best photo in the exhibit.
Question: Which is the best photo in the exhibit?
Statement: Someone's parents are in the waiting room.
Question: Whose parents are in the waiting room?
Method 4: Add whom, when, where, or how to the start of the sentence, and put the subject between the helping verb and the main verb.
Statement: The class starts in an hour.
Question: When will the class start?
Question: When does the class start?
Notice that a helping verb (will or does) has been