phrases, sayings, idioms and expressions at

Phrases, Sayings and Idioms Home > Discussion Forum

We Need More Parts Of Speech

Posted by Bob on September 24, 2003

In Reply to: Re: Parts Of Speech? posted by R. Berg on September 24, 2003

: : Despite still just about remembering my French and German grammar, have I gone mad when I claim that, in the English language, there are nine parts of speech? My mother unearthed a Victorian children's book that only delineated eight (in nursery rhyme form), but I'm claiming that the definite and indefinite articles form a part of speech in their own right.

: : P.S. I'll brook no nonsense about gerunds and gerundives here.

: I believe that the official line when I went to school was that there were eight. Webster's Unabridged, 2nd ed. , s.v. "part of speech," lists eight. The OED says "Usually reckoned as eight . . . (sometimes as nine, the article being reckoned separately from the adjective)."

Even 9 is inadequate. We should add the Slobovial, as in "Yo," "Dude," and the Slobovial-Indicitave "YoDude!" Then there's the Gassicator,a word or fog of words which subtracts meaning, found frequently in political speech.. And the Emptitude, as in teen ramblings, like in like you know like "whatever." We could even postulate the existence of the Demiplural, as when "their" is used, desperately, to avoid specifying a gender.