English Grammatical Terms


Letter C

  • Capitalize – To “Capitalize” means:  To put a letter into its “capital” or “upper-case” form.  Such as: A,B,C – as opposed to: a,b,c
  • Capital LetterA “capital” letter is one which is in what is also called its “upper-cas” form…  as described above.
  • CaseThe form of a word which shows its relationship to other words in the sentence.
  • ClauseA group of words within a sentence which contain a subject and a verb.
  • Common NounA common noun is a type of noun which names a certain “class” of things.  Those which have many individual things within that same group.  Examples:  Chair, Car, Boat, Person, – as opposed to:  Rocking Chair, Audi, Sail Boat, Bob
  • Comparative – (Also known as the “Comparative Degree”) – The form of an adjective which ends with the “-er” suffix or is modified with the word “more” – as a way of “comparing” it to one or more other things.
  • ComplementThe root or the word “Complement” is the word “Complete”.  With the suffix “-ment” added to it, it is a word which gives “complete”-ness to another.  And its use in grammar is to refer to a word that follows a verb and “completes” the meaning of the sentence or verb phrase.
  • Complex-Compound SentenceA complex-compound sentence (sometimes mistakenly referred to as a “compound-complex sentence”) is a sentence with two “main” clauses and at least one subordinate.  It is made up of a compound-sentence and a complex sentence.  Therefore the complex sentence added to the compound one, makes it complex (rather than the other way around.)
  • Complex SentenceA complex sentence is made up of one main clause, and at least one subordinate clause.
  • Compound SentenceA compound sentence is made up of two or more independent clauses, and is formed with the use of a conjunction and/or punctuation to differentiate between the clauses.
  • Compound SubjectThe term “Compound Subject” is used to refer to a situation where-in more than one subject is acting upon the same predicate.
  • Compound Verb PhraseA compound verb phrase is when a predicate contains more than one verb which refers to a different actions or states of being.
  • Compound ModifierThis term refers to the situation where-in two or more adjectives or adverbs are modifying the same word or phrase, and may be joined with punctuation and/or conjunctions.
  • Compound SentenceA Compound Sentence is one which is made up of two or more independent clauses, but has no subordinate (which would make it “complex”)
  • Compound-WordThis is the term which refers to terms that are made up of two distinct words combined to refer to one single thing.  Such as:  “Duct-Tap”, “Keyboard”, “Dip-Stick”, “Motorcycle”, etc.. – Notice also that the compound word can be either one single word or a hyphenated compound of two words.
  • ConjunctionA conjunction is a word or phrase which is used to join tow other words, phrases, or clauses together.  Such as:  “and”, “but”, “for”, “nor”, “or”, “so”, “yet”, etc..
  • Conjunctive AdverbThis is an adverb which functions as a conjunction within a sentence, and is usually used to show: comparison, contrast, cause & effect, sequential events, etc..  They normally are found in-between independent clauses. – Examples are:  “accordingly”, besides, consequently, finally, further-more, however, more-over, never-the-less, there-fore, etc..
  • ConsonantA consonant is any letter with-in the alphabet that is not a vowel – b,c,d, etc..  However, the letter “Y” can act as both a consonant and a vowel.
  • ContractionThis term refers to the situation where-in a common phrase is shortened by removing letters and combining the words.  Such as:  do not > “don’t”  –  “I will” > “I’ll”This usually happens as a result of people “shortening” their speech.  Then as it becomes more common.  The word is developed.  Such as:  “Going to…” > “Gonna”  –  “Got to…” > “Gotta”
  • Coordinating AdjectivesA coordinating adjective is one which is made up of two adjectives describing the same thing, which are necessary as a pair, as – if one were eliminated, the meaning would change.  Coordinating adjectives should always be joined with a hyphen (even though many people do not…  this simply shows poor style and grammatical comprehension.)
  • Coordinating Conjunction – This is the most common type of conjunction, and is used to join similar things together, and include all of the examples above.
  • Correlative ConjunctionAlso join things together but act in pairs for the sake of comparison of things or ideas.  The used of one of the pairs without its complement may be common, but it represents poor style.  Examples are:  “either”/”or”, “neither”/”nor”, “both”/”and”, “whether”/”or…”, “not”/”but”, & “not only…”/”but also…”
  • Cumulative AdjectiveThis is a type of coordinating adjective which must be made with the adjectives in a specific order, as if the order would change, it would either – not make sense, or the meaning would change.  As in the terms “Compound-Complex Sentence” as opposed to “Complex-Compound Sentence”…  The first word always modifies the second.This also applies to adjectival phrases as well.  So one who has recently discovered GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!, might refer to his previous teachers as…“My intellectually-inadequate, former English teacher…”However, if the word order were changed, it would not make any sense…“My English intellectually-inadequate former teacher…”This would imply that the teacher is from England, and is teaching the intellectually-inadequate style of something called “former”.

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See Also:

The Letter C,c (The English Alphabet)


Letter C,c – Pronunciation Guide


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