An appositive is a word or group of words that identifies or renames the noun or pronoun that it follows. It is set off by commas unless closely tied to the word that it identifies or renames. (“Closely tied” means that it is needed to identify the word.) Examples: My son Carl is a medical technician. (no commas) Badger, our dog with a missing leg, has a love for cats. (commas needed)
Appositives should not be confused with predicate nominatives. A verb will separate the subject from the predicate nominative. An appositivecan follow any noun or pronoun including the subject, direct object, or predicate nominative.
Instructions: Identify the appositives in the following sentences and tell whether they are appositives to subjects, direct objects, or predicate nominatives.
1. My brother Bill has a cabin in the mountains.
2. Friday, my birthday, will be the thirteenth.
3. Hopping on the fence was a rare bird, the cedar waxwing.
4. This is Fred, an old roommate of mine.
5. Have you seen my car, an old Rambler.
–For answers scroll down.
1. Bill = appositive to subject, brother
2. birthday = appositive to subject, Friday
3. cedar waxwing = appositive to subject, bird
4. roommate = appositive to predicate nominative, Fred
5. Rambler = appositive to direct object, car
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