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definition of the word part_of_speech

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Part of speech

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Singular
part of speech

Plural
parts of speech

part of speech (plural parts of speech)

  1. (grammar) The function a word or phrase performs in a sentence or phrase.
    • 1933, Leonard Bloomfield, Language, page 269:
      One group of substantives, the gerunds (scolding), belongs to a form-class with infinitives and with other verb-forms, in serving as head for certain types of modifiers, such as a goal (scolding the boys). For this reason a system of parts of speech in a language like English cannot be set up in any fully satisfactory way: our list of parts of speech will depend upon which functions we take to be the most important.

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