Nouns or nominatives of address are the persons or things to which you are speaking. They are set off from the rest of the sentence by a comma or commas, may have modifiers, and are not related to the rest of the sentence grammatically. You can remove them and a complete sentence remains. They may be first, last or in the middle of the sentence. Examples: John, where are you going? Where are you going, John? Where, John, are you going?
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 appositive can follow any noun or pronoun including the subject, direct object or predicate nominative.
We must be sure to not confuse nouns of address with appositivessince they are both set off with commas.
Because I use diagramming to teach in the classroom and can’t on the internet, I will be asking you to find various parts of the sentence for the repetition. The repetition should help you remember the parts of the sentence.
Instructions: Find the verbs, subjects, predicate nominatives, direct objects, appositives, and nouns of address in these sentences and tell whether the verb is transitive active (ta), transitive passive (tp), intransitive linking (il), or intransitive complete (ic).
1. My car, a Plymouth van, rolled over and over on the highway.
2. Class, please read chapter one, “Verbs.”
3. Gentlemen, we must help our young people, the leaders of tomorrow.
4. Sarah, this is my brother Ken.
5. We are planning a trip for next summer, young lady.
–For answers scroll down.
1. rolled = verb (ic), car = subject, van = appositive
2. read = verb (ta), you (understood) = subject, chapter one = direct object, “Verbs” = appositive, class = noun of address
3. must help = verb (ta), we = subject, people = direct object, leaders = appositive, gentlemen = noun of address
4. is = verb (il), this = subject, brother = predicate nominative, Ken = appositive, Sarah = noun of address
5. are planning = verb (ta), we = subject, trip = direct object, lady = noun of address
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