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What is a Sentence? Types & Examples of Various Sentences

Updated on October 21, 2020
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Muhammad Rafiq is a freelance writer, blogger, and translator with a master's degree in English literature from the University of Malakand.

What is a Sentence?
What is a Sentence? | Source

What is a Sentence?

A sentence may be defined as a group of words that makes a complete sense. There are two essential parts of a sentence. The first part is called a subject, while the second part is called a predicate. The subject is the part of the sentence, which names something or is the doer of the action, while the predicate is the part of the sentence, which receives the action. A predicate is a combination of a verb and an object. Look at the following table, wherein the subjects and predicate have been shown:

Subject
Predicate
Adela
is reading a book.
They
will fight for their rights.
You
should wait for hi.
She
could have helped her.
It
was raining heavily.
You
had better talk to her.

Another important factor that differentiates a sentence from just a combination of words is its semantic feature. Only a combination of many words doesn’t make a sentence. It is mandatory for a sentence to contain meaningful words in proper order and according to the patterns of grammar to convey a complete thought. The sentence, “Colourless yellow thoughts are weeping” is grammatically correct but semantically incorrect. Moreover, the following combination of words cannot be called sentences as they are incomplete in terms of meaning and grammar:

  1. He will write…………………….. (What?)
  2. She goes………………………….. (Where?)
  3. He eats…………………………… (What?)

These sentences will become meaningful if we modify them as:

  1. He will write a book.
  2. She goes to school every day.
  3. He eats an apple.

A group of words or a single word that expresses a complete thought, feeling, or idea is called a sentence. It usually contains an explicit or implied subject and a predicate containing a finite verb.

— Encarta Dictionary

Types of Sentences

Usually, there are four kinds of sentences, which are discussed below:

Declarative Sentences

What is a Declarative Sentence? It is a type of sentence, wherein the speaker makes a statement or assertion about something. The statement could be positive or negative. The following sentences are positive and negative statements:

  1. She is living in London.
  2. They don’t like to go to the party with him.
  3. You will not be able to pass the test.
  4. It won’t be raining there.
  5. You should obey your parents.

How to identify declarative sentences? It is very easy to identify declarative sentences. Declarative sentences end with a period (.). There is no question mark or exclamatory mark at the end of a declarative sentence. Every declarative sentence ends with a period (.). Negation is another key feature of declarative sentences. If there is negation in a sentence, then it is identified as a declarative sentence. The word “not” is placed before the main verb or after an auxiliary verb. Let’s see the following examples:

  1. They should not allow him to watch that movie.
  2. We didn’t ask him to swim in the river.
  3. He could not complete the test.
  4. She had not lent me some money.
  5. You cannot purchase this car.

Examples of Declarative Sentences

  1. She loves her dog.
  2. He does not want to buy a black car.
  3. The sky is blue.
  4. She is a great teacher.
  5. Adela is her sister.
  6. They like to eat mangoes.
  7. You should not have visited London in December.
  8. You love your cats.
  9. I like to go there.
  10. She is singing a song.

Interrogative Sentences

Those sentences which ask questions are called Interrogative sentences. Interrogative sentences end at a question mark instead of a period. The following sentences show us that the subjects of the sentences ask some questions:

  1. Where are you going now?
  2. Where do you live?
  3. Which book do you want to buy?
  4. Is it raining outside?

Imperative Sentences

Those sentences which give orders, commands or make an entreaty and request are called Imperative sentences. The following sentences are example of Imperative sentences:

  1. Be quiet.
  2. Come here.
  3. Please, shut the door.
  4. Please, forgive me.

Exclamatory Sentences

Those sentences which express some strong emotional feelings or excitement are called exclamatory sentences. In exclamatory sentence, the speaker gives vent to his hidden feelings through some bodily gestures like weeping, smiling, wrath, etc. An important feature of exclamatory sentence is the use of exclamatory mark at the end of each sentence. This exclamatory mark differentiates an exclamatory sentence from a declarative sentence, which ends at a period. If an exclamatory word is used, then the sentence will end at a period. Look at the following sentences:

  1. How beautiful you are!
  2. Come here!
  3. Hurray! We have won the match.
  4. Alas! He is dead.

Sentences Quiz

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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2015 Muhammad Rafiq

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