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The Phrase Differentiating between the phrase and the clause is the fact that phrases do not contain the subject verb relationships that clauses do A phrase then is a group of related words used as a single part of speech There are seven types of phrases which will be discussed in this handout verb prepositional participial verbal noun gerund infinitive appositive and absolute Verb Phrase A verb phrase consists of a main verb and the helping verbs Main verb crawl Verb phrase will crawl Main verb listen Verb phrase have been listening Main verb find Verb phrase would have been found The most commonly used helping verbs are as follows be am is are etc have could did may shall has would does might will had should do must can NOTE Be used as a helping verb can be distinguished from be as a linking verb because when be is used as a helping verb there will always be a main verb used with it but when be is used as a linking verb it will be the main verb Prepositional Phrases A prepositional phrase is a group of words beginning with a preposition and ending with a noun or a pronoun which is called the object of the preposition Prepositions are connecting words used to show the relationship of one word to another The word preposition means placed before It is so named because it is usually placed before a noun or a pronoun or a noun phrase or clause The river is at the edge of town He acted like a friend of the family The principal prepositions are as follows about There were fences about the estate He inquired about my health I must be about my business above The birds flew above the house Look at the sentence above the last one He was above suspicion across They rowed across the river after After the storm the sun shone brightly The son was fter his father s money In rank a captain is after a gene against He leaned against the wall The enemy is always against us The teacher is against taiki g n He is saving his money against a rainy dal He charged twenty dollars against

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