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A simple sentence is a group of words expressing a complete thought, and it
must have a subject and a verb (predicate – some grammar books use the word predicate, but I will use verb).  A verb shows action or state of being.  The subject tells who or what about the verb.  When finding the subject and the verb in a sentence, always find the verb first and then say who or what followed by the verb.

      Example:
      The bell rang.
      Find the verb – rang
      Who or what rang?
      The bell rang, so bell is the subject.
      The bell rang.

Some sentences begin with an introductory there. It is never the
subject. The subject will always come after the verb in such a sentence. There
can also be an adverb. The introductory there doesn’t fit
grammatically with the rest of the sentence as we will find most other words do.

 

To be an introductory there, it must meet these
rules: 

  1. It must be the first word of a sentence. (Sometimes a prepositional phrase
    out of its normal order can come before it.)
  2. It cannot mean where.
  3. It must be
    with a state of being verb.  

      Example: 

      There is some food in the refrigerator.

      Find the verbis

      Who or
what is

      Food is, so food is the subject. 

      There is some food in the refrigerator.

 

      Example:

      In the refrigerator there is some
food

      (Moving the prepositional phrase does not change the introductory there.)


Instructions: Find the subject and verb in these sentences.

1. There may not be time for an encore.

2. In the mail box, there was no mail.

3. There has been no letter today.

4. There weren’t many men at the meeting.

5. In the snow there were many tracks.

–For answers scroll
down.

Answers:

1. There may not be time for an encore.

2. In the mail box, there was no mail.

3. There has been no letter today.

4. There weren’t many men at the meeting.

5. In the snow there were many tracks.

 

For your convenience, all of our lessons are available on our website in our lesson archive at http://www.dailygrammar.com/archive.html.



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