Thursday, January 15, 2009

Lesson 39: Appositive Phrase


Review: You have learned that A PHRASE is a group of related words used as a single part of speech. A Phrase lacks a subject, a predicate or both. Consequently, a phrase cannot be a sentence. Now, you will learn the second kind of phrase: An Appositive Phrase.

An APPOSITIVE PHRASE is a noun or a pronoun with or without modifiers that is placed in beside another noun or pronoun to identify or describe the person or thing it refers to.

  • Justin, my bestfriend, is an expert model.
  • Beethoven, a pianist, has changed the world of music.


An ESSENTIAL APPOSITIVE is necessary to the meaning of a sentence. Do not set it off from the rest of the sentence.

  • Our moderator Professor Gillard argued on the decision of the judges.
  • Her bestfriend and adviser Maureen Dave always reminds her of the importance of politeness.

note: no comma is used when dealing with an essential appositive.


A NON-ESSENTIAL APPOSITIVE is not necessary to the meaning of the sentence. Therefore, you must set it of with commas.

  • The award, a medal and a trophy, was given during the program.
  • Mr. Waltz, a very close family friend, is planning to spend vacation with us.


~end of lesson~

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