A word is a single unit of language.
Examples of words: a, an, soil, car, house, Peter, school, etc.
By definition, a word class is one of the grammatical categories of words which reflect various functions in grammar.
GROUPS OF WORD CLASSES
There are two major groups of Word classes:
(A) Major word classes
English language has four major word classes:
Features and Examples of Major Word Classes
(i) Major word classes have many thousands of members, and new nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs are often created.
(ii) Nouns are the most common type of word, followed by verbs.
(iii) Adjectives are less common and adverbs are even less common.
(iv) Many words belong to more than one word class. For example, 'surprise' can be used as a noun or as a verb; fast can be used as an adjective or an adverb:
- He surprised me.
> He left us with a great surprise.
- I love fast cars.
> I drive so fast.
More Examples of sentences:
- I go to school everyday. (school = noun)
- They go to the church on Sundays. (go = verb)
- Serengeti is a great tourist attraction. (great = adjective)
- Walk slowly. (slowly = adverb)
(B) Minor word classes
The minor word classes include in English Language:
Examples of sentences:
- He lives in Dar es Salaam. (in = preposition)
- He lives in Dar es Salaam. (He = pronoun)
- An amazing story. (An = determiner/Article
- Do it or leave it. (or = conjunction)
- Wow! (interjection)
Note: We'll learn more about word classes or parts of speech later in this course.