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Kinds Of Sentences

Study these sentences:

1. The smith was a mighty man.

2. The smithy stood under a spreading chestnut tree.

3. It was the smith's daughter who sang in the choir.

4. He was pleased when he heard her sing.

5. His hands were large and sinewy and the muscles of his arms were strong.

6. He looked the whole world in the face, he feared not any man, he owed not any man.

7. My judgment approves this measure because it is just, and my whole heart is in it.

8. Napoleon, who had been aroused by the tumult, hurried to the spot; and when the alarm seemed at an end, he retired to his quarters.

It is seen that the first two sentences contain each one subject and one predicate.

Such sentences are simple sentences.

Each of the sentences numbered 3 and 4 contains more than one subject and more than one predicate, but only one statement in each expresses an independent thought.

Who sang in the choir is an adjective clause and modifies daughter.

When he heard her sing is an adverbial clause and modifies was pleased.

Sentences which contain a principal statement and a clause or clauses, are complex sentences.

Each of the sentences numbered 5 and 6 contains more than one statement. Each of these, statements is independent of the other. Sentences numbered 5 and 6 are compound sentences.

In sentences numbered 7 and 8 we see other compound sentences. We shall study such sentences later. Thus it is seen that there are three kinds of sentences.

A simple sentence is a sentence that contains but one subject and one predicate.

A complex sentence is a sentence that contains one principal statement and one or more clauses.

A compound sentence is a sentence that contains two or more independent statements.

The independent statements of a compound sentence may be modified by clauses as in sentences 7 and 8.


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