4.3.1 Subject and verb
A sentence consists of a number of words which, to make sense, must include a verb. Unless this is the only word in the sentence (as in ‘Run!’), there will normally be a word telling us who or what is doing the action. This person or thing carrying out the action of the verb – which is denoted by a noun or a pronoun – is called the subject of the verb.
Consider these sentences:
The players ran onto the pitch. The referee blew his whistle, and the centre-forward kicked off.
This short passage has three separate statements (in the two sentences), each determined by a different action expressed by a verb – ran, blew and kicked. There are also three separate ‘doers’ or subjects of the actions: the players, the referee and the centre-forward.
Identify the subjects and verbs in the following sentences. Type your answers in the boxes provided. The first one has been done for you.
- I like chocolate.
- The boys ran as fast as they could.
- Tomorrow my friend and I are going to Paris.
- She was sitting beside her friend on the bus and they were talking loudly.
- Chris and Robbie climbed the tree.
|2.||The boys / they||ran / could|
|3.||My friend and I||are going|
|4.||She / they||was sitting / were talking|
|5.||Chris and Robbie||climbed|