May 3, 2022

What Are The Types of Sentences and How Can They Be Classified?

Types of Sentences

For our words to make sense, we form them into sentences. The special structure of English phrases has its own grammatical and lexical secrets. Having correctly arranged all the elements, you will be able to speak this language competently.

What is the sentence? This structuring of your thoughts is ringed by logical intonation, emotional coloring, and grammatical norms. As any reference books say, a sentence is a combination of words that expresses a complete thought and is an independent speech unit. What are the classifications? Among the types of offers you will find:

  • Imperative sentences.
  • Declarative sentences.
  • Interrogative sentences.
  • Exclamatory sentences.

10 Sentence Structure Types You Should Recognize With Examples

Compared with some other languages, where the meaning does not change from the rearrangement of the places of terms, English is more organized. All the details about the arrangement of words into a single phrase can be read and studied more. Most sentences have a subject, a predicate, and minor members.

Each of them performs not only a grammatical function but also carries a certain lexical meaning. So, depending on what purpose your statement pursues, sentences in English can be divided into the following types.

What are the types of sentences in English by structure? These units of speech have another classification according to the structure. In each of them, affirmative and negative sentences, exclamatory and imperative sentences can be used.

Simple and Complex Sentence Structure

Simple ones can consist only of a subject and a predicate (unextended sentence – non-common) or, in addition to them, including secondary ones, such as definition, circumstance, and addition (extended sentence – common). In their composition, these statements have only one pair of main members.

  • The brave won’t lay down their arms.
  • He wanted to stay for tea with them.
  • The car stopped.

The second group can be called statements that are complex in structure, which consist of 2 (in some cases, more) parts – complex sentences. This type also distinguishes its subgroups: compound sentences and complex sentences.

Interruptive Sentence Structure

Compound sentences consist of, so to speak, equal parts. In other words, each of them can exist separately and, at the same time, not lose its meaning. Conjunctions such as and, but, as well as connect two elements or are separated by punctuation marks.

  • The music stopped, and the couples on the dance floor began drifting back to their tables.
  • Gulliver was lying on his back. His arms and legs were strongly fastened to the ground.

Complex sentences, on the contrary, consist of the main and dependent parts (the principle and subordinate clause), which, when used separately, loses grammatical and lexical meaning. And here, there are still subspecies that are structured according to the type of subordinate clause:

  • Subject.
  • Predicative Clauses.
  • Object Clauses.
  • Attributive.
  • Adverbial.

Below you can see examples of such sentences.

  • What I need is a new dress.
  • My impression is that John must not leave now.
  • Everyone knows that such people as scientists are few and far between.
  • I know the girl who is singing now.
  • After she got married, she changed completely.

Cumulative Sentence Structure

Unlike structure-free complex sentences, non-free complex sentences are built according to non-free models, which, in addition to the indicated structural elements, also include other, more specific ones (separate forms of words and even whole turns). This makes the connection between the predicative parts especially close and the grammatical meanings more complex, and in many cases, they are not directly motivated by the structural elements that form the models of such sentences.

Inverted Sentence Structure

An inverted sentence is a sentence in a language, usually with a first subject, in which the predicate comes before the subject. Since there is no object after the verb, the noun phrase after the verb can be decoded as the subject without any problems.

Parallel/Balanced Sentence Structure

In texts with a parallel connection, sentences related in meaning usually have the same subject. Naming actions, events, phenomena located nearby (adjacent), parallel connections by their very nature are intended for description and narration. The most typical for texts with parallel connections is the following structure. First comes the opening, containing the thought-thesis of the entire text. This is followed by a series of sentences that expand on this idea.

Triadic Sentence

This is such a principle of constructing an utterance, in which part of it is in the form of separate as if additional information is attached to the main message. Attaching structures usually contain additional information – by association, an explanation, or comment.

What is Anaphora?

This is a stylistic device when the same words, elements, or sounds are repeated at the beginning of each row of a verse, stanza, or phrase. In English literature, this makes speech sound more expressive and emotional for dramatic effect. What are the anaphora types of sentences?

  • Lexical;
  • Sound;
  • Morphemic;
  • Syntactic;
  • Strophic;
  • Rhythmic;
  • Pause.

Speakers love anaphora. For example, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill used this part of his speech after the entry of Great Britain into World War II. Most often, anaphora is used by poets. Some types of sentences of anaphora are possible only in verse, for example, rhythmic or strophic anaphora.

What is a Rhetorical Question?

Rhetorical question, rhetorical appeal, and rhetorical exclamation – why are these figures of speech needed? How is a rhetorical question different from a regular one? In what situations are these questions appropriate, and in what situations it is better to refuse them. How do you replace a rhetorical question to make the dialogue constructive? Before you find answers to these questions, first of all, find out what a rhetorical question is.

A rhetorical question is a statement question that does not require an answer. It is assumed that the answer to it is obvious. For example: “Have you all gone crazy?”, “How long can you endure?”, “Who do you take me for?” The task of a rhetorical question is to attract the attention of listeners or readers, to make them think about the problem, and push them to a certain conclusion.

What is Chiasmus?

Politicians often capture the essence of a campaign in a few brief phrases and use various figures of speech to make their speeches memorable. At first glance, a whole team of professional writers is needed to create such texts. This task is within the power of everyone. It is enough to understand the rules for compiling rhetorical figures. According to the definition, chiasmus is a rhetorical figure consisting of a cruciform change in the sequence of elements in two parallel rows of words.

The elements of the first half of the sentence in its second part reverse the order, creating the effect of opposing concepts. In terms of grammatical structure, this construction resembles parallelism. Authors often use “but” or “however” to emphasize the contrast between two sentence parts. This is an easy way to make contrast clear and memorable. Chiasm allows you to achieve this effect differently and creates a feeling of complete disclosure of the topic. At the same time, deep thoughts are expressed in very simple and accessible words. Here are some examples of this approach.

What is Antithesis

To add a handful of uniqueness, expressiveness, and brightness to a literary work or oratory, there are many stylistic devices, one of which is called antithesis, which is also used in the English language, moreover, very effectively.

This artistic technique makes it possible to oppose two opposites explicitly. A similar symbolic figure was often used earlier and is used today by writers and poets, that is, creative people. Antithesis is a stylistic device (or figure) based on a deliberate contrasting opposition of directly opposite concepts, related to each other by a common theme or filled with common inner content.

Four different kinds of sentences in English

So, you have learned that there are simple, compound, and complex sentences in English. Regarding the purpose of the utterance, they differ little from sentences in any other language. Pay special attention to conditional sentences. As you can see, there are many important nuances here. But, in general, the topic is quite simple. It would seem, what difficulties can arise here? Or maybe, what do you think? In addition to those types of sentences that are shown below, several more such expressions do not belong to any of the listed types:

  • Vocatives: James! Mrs. Fox! Girls!
  • Yes/No answers.
  • Interjections: Dear me! Goodness Gracious! Good heavens!
  • Conversational formulas: Thanks. Goodbye. Bye-bye. Hi!

Imperative sentence

Imperative sentences call for action. Below you can see examples of an imperative sentence.

  • Stop here!
  • Let him go!

Declarative sentence

A declarative sentence, or, as it is often called, an affirmative statement, at the end of which there is a period. Such declarative sentences report some action, express an attitude, or deny information. They can be both simple and complex (complex or complex). This is in direct word order. Some examples of declarative sentences:

  • The town is asleep.
  • It’s no use in making a decision today.
  • I haven’t drunk this coffee.

Interrogative sentence

Interrogative sentences in English are very diverse. In fact, in interrogative sentences, this is a request for information, represented by different types: general, separating (tag question), alternative question, the question to the subject, and special question. The word order is broken by auxiliary verbs, with the help of which questions are formed. Some examples of interrogative sentences:

  • Are you ready?
  • Do you often walk in the evening?
  • He doesn’t speak English, does he?
  • Do you like tea or coffee?
  • Who has the school bag?
  • What were you doing at 5 ‘clock yesterday?

Interrogative sentences can be easy to write if you ask yourself or others many questions.

Exclamatory sentence

Exclamatory sentences have a pronounced emotional connotation. Just see exclamatory sentences in the examples below.

  • What a nice day!
  • How funny it is!
  • If only he had come!

To practice writing exclamatory sentences, you just need to follow the structure. Exclamatory sentences can be easy to write if you trust your emotions.

How to Choose the Right Type of Sentence

There is nothing complicated here. It is worth understanding and remembering once. All this is best studied in examples that show all the nuances, interactions, and features. Each statement can be simple or complex, affirmative, interrogative, or exclamatory sentences. Consider 10 sentences in English.

  • I will come home at 6 o’clock. – Simple declarative sentence, common, affirmative, personal.
  • Nick and Tom blamed themselves for the accident. – Simple type of declarative sentences, common, affirmative, personal.
  • How he made a mistake is not clear to us. – Complex, subject clause, negative, personal.
  • This is the house in which I was born. – Complex, subordinate attributive, affirmative, personal.
  • She raised her eyes, and she laughed! – Complex exclamatory sentence, compound, exclamatory sentence, personal
  • What else could you do? – Simple interrogative sentence, common, personal.
  • Torrence was staying in the Hotel. – Simple, common, affirmative, personal.
  • The woman cried. – Simple, non-common, affirmative, personal.
  • He was so ill that he could hardly open his eyes. – Complex, subordinate circumstance, affirmative, personal.
  • Unless somebody interferes, there will not be an end to arguing. – Complex, subordinate circumstance, personal.

The Importance of Sentence Variety

So, it is worth summing up all of the above. Each statement differs in meaning, intonation, and structure, such as imperative and declarative sentences. To determine the type of phrase by purpose, you need to look at the punctuation mark at the end and for the presence of the particle, not as in the case of interrogative sentence and imperative sentence.

In a declarative sentence that is simple in structure, there can be only one pair of subject and predicate. In a complex one, on the contrary, two or more. Well, personal or impersonal interrogative sentence, it is quite easy to recognize by the subject, which either performs an action or is simply located for a bunch.

Learning syntax under certain conditions can be a very exciting experience. But if you have some difficulties with constructing imperative sentences, for example, you can turn to essay writing services that will help you at any moment.