What is Phrases: Definitions & Types


A phrase is a part of of a sentence. Phrases are regarded as a simple part of speech. A phrase is a group of words which makes a sense but not a complete sense, and which has no subject or finite verb of its own. 

E. g.

  1. He has a sense of duty.
  2. She is a woman of great beauty.
  3. The boy stood in front of the main gate.
  4. He came in the morning.
  5. I have read Bacon as well as Shakespeare.
  6. What a surprise! You have won a prize.

In the above first sentence, the phrases ‘sense of duty’ has been used as an object to the verb ‘has’ .it does the work of a noun. So it is a Noun phrase.

In the second sentence above, the phrase ‘great beauty ‘ qualifies the Noun Women. It does the work as an adjective.

In the third sentence ,the phrase In the morning, modifies the verb ‘came’. It does the work of an adverb.

In fourth sentence, the phrase ‘in front of ‘ has been used as preposition. It is a preposition phrase. 

In the sixth sentence the phrase ‘what a surprise!’ has been used as an interjection to express a feeling of joy and sorrow. It is an interjection phrase.

Some Commonly Used Phrase:

a) Noun Phrase :

  • Bed of roses
  • Lock and key
  • Bed of thorns
  • Heaven and earth
  • Rice and Curry
  • profit and loss
  • Pen and paper
  • Right and Wrong.
  • Board and Lodging
  • Weal and woe
  • Ups and downs
  • virtue and vice
  • Rise and fall.
  • Mother tongue
  • Husband and wife.
  • Father and son.
  • Public Service
  • Mother and daughter.
  • Summer vacation

b) Adjective Phrases :

  • A man of word
  • A man character
  • A man of wealth
  • A man of honour
  • Made in India.
  • Made in England
  • Made of Gold.
  • Made of Stainless Steel.
  • Blind of an eye.
  • Lame of one leg.
  • Hard of hearing
  • Busy in work.

c) Adverb Phase :

  • Once upon a time
  • Once in a blue moon.
  • In olden days.
  • All-day long.
  • All the year-round.
  • At midnight
  • Before long.
  • At home and abroad.
  • Out of doors.
  • Here and there.
  • At the eleventh hour.
  • Heart and soul .

D) Prepositions Phrases :

  • On account of
  • Because of.
  • In front of.
  • For the sake of
  • By means of
  • By dint of
  • In course of
  • Instead of
  • In question of
  • In search of

e) Conjunction Phrase :

  • As well As
  • As soon as
  • As long as
  • As fast as
  • No sooner…….. than
  • Scarcely……………………….. When
  • Not only…………. But also

f) Interjection Phase :

  • Good Heavens!
  • For God’s Sake!
  • How wonderful !
  • What a pity!
  • What a shame!
  • Oh me!
  • My love!
  • My God

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