Although sentences can be infinitely rich and complex, they are based on nouns
and verbs. Nearly everything else provides information about the nouns and
verbs in some way.
we can say that nouns tend to be the names of things, whereas verbs tend
to be words that describe actions and states of being. On this basis, we can see
that sentences generally express two types of relations: (a) an agent performing
an action; (b) existence. Sentences 1 and 2 illustrate the two types.

1. Dogs bark.
2. The tree was tall.

The word dogs is the agent of sentence 1. It performs the action conveyed in
the word bark. We also can say that dogs is the subject of the sentence. Thus,
subject is our first function category. The word bark supplies information about
dogs, stating or describing what they do.Words that state an action of this sort
and that supply information about the nature of subjects or what they are doing
are referred to as predicates. Thus, predicate is our second function category.A
predicate consists of the main verb of a sentence and all the words associated
with it. Although in sentence 2 the tree is not an agent, the sentence expresses a
fact about the tree’s existence—it was tall. The tree, therefore, is the subject,
and was tall is the predicate. Understanding subject and predicate is important
because these are the two central functional parts of all sentences. If one is
missing, we don’t have a sentence. Functionally, everything else in a sentence
is related to its subject and predicate in some way.


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