What Is A Predicate, And How Does It Work?

what is a predicate

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Do you ever find yourself lost in the maze of grammar rules – like knowing what is a predicate? Understanding how to blog post we’ll break down exactly what predicates are and how they work so that your sentences will be grammatically correct every time. So grab your favorite pen and notepad, it’s time for some grammar lessons!

What is a Predicate?

In grammar, a predicate is defined as the part of a sentence that includes the verb and all of its modifiers and objects. In simpler terms, it is the part of a sentence that tells us what the subject is doing or what is happening to it.

  • For example, in the sentence “The cat chased the mouse,” the predicate would be “chased the mouse,” as that is what the cat is doing.

Understanding the concept of the predicate is essential to developing strong writing skills, as it allows writers to construct meaningful and grammatically correct sentences. So if you want to take your writing to the next level, be sure to master the art of the predicate!

what is a predicate

Types of Predicates

When it comes to understanding the structure of a sentence, predicates play a critical role. Predicates typically include a verb or verbs and any other necessary components, such as objects or complements. But did you know that there are different types of predicates? There are:

  • Noun Predicates

Noun predicates are often used to describe or rename the subject of a sentence, and they can contain modifiers such as adjectives or prepositional phrases.

  • Adjective Predicates

Adjective predicate involves an adjective that describes or modifies the subject of the sentence.

For example, in the sentence “The cake is delicious,” “delicious” is the adjective predicate that describes the cake.

While it might seem like a small detail, recognizing the role of adjective predicates is an important step in developing your linguistic expertise.

  • Verb Predicates 

In the world of grammar, predicates play a crucial role in forming sentences. A predicate is part of a sentence that contains a verb and explains the action or state of being performed by the subject. One of the types of predicates is the verb predicate, which is composed of a verb and any accompanying objects, adverbs, or phrases.

This type of predicate emphasizes the action being performed by the subject and helps the reader understand the meaning of the sentence.

For example, in the sentence “The cat chased the mouse,” the verb predicate is “chased the mouse.”

Understanding the different types of predicates can enhance your writing and help you convey your message more effectively.

How to Identify a Predicate in a Sentence

Understanding the different parts of speech can sometimes be tricky, but with a little practice, it becomes much easier. When it comes to identifying predicates in a sentence, there are a few key things to look out for:

  • The predicate is always the part of the sentence that tells us what the subject is doing, or what is happening to the subject.
  • It usually includes a verb and may also include other words that modify that verb.
  • To identify the predicate in a sentence, start by looking for the subject – this is the noun or pronoun that the sentence is about.
  • Once you’ve located the subject, ask yourself what it is doing, and that will help you identify the predicate.

With a little practice, you’ll be able to quickly identify predicates in any sentence!

Examples of Noun and Adjective Predicates

Noun and adjective predicates are crucial components of English language. In simple terms, noun predicates refer to the predicate nominative or a noun that functions as the subject complement, whereas adjective predicates refer to the predicate adjective or an adjective that modifies the subject. Both noun and adjective predicates are essential to conveying meaning and clarifying relationships between subjects and their predicates.

  • For example, in the sentence “The cake is delicious,” “delicious” is an adjective predicate because it describes the cake.

It’s important to understand how to use noun and adjective predicates properly to ensure clear and concise communication.

Examples of Verb Predicates 

Verb predicates are essential components of sentences as they express the action or state of being of the subject.

  • Some examples of verb predicates include “ran,” “swam,” “is sleeping,” “has eaten,” and “will drive.

These predicates help to identify the tense in which the sentence is written, whether it’s in the past, present, or future, and they also add depth and specificity to the subject. Understanding verb predicates is crucial in constructing well-formed sentences, whether in writing or speaking.

As you become more accustomed to using different verb predicates, you’ll be able to communicate your thoughts more effectively, enhancing your ability to express yourself in any situation.

The Function of the Subject and the Object in a Sentence with a Verb Predicate 

When it comes to constructing a sentence with a verb predicate, the role of the subject and object cannot be overlooked. The subject is the person or thing that acts, while the object is the person or thing that is being acted upon. Understanding the function of these two components is crucial if you want to effectively communicate your thoughts and ideas.

Sentences can take on different tones and meanings based on how the subject and object are placed within the sentence.

  • For example, placing the subject at the beginning of the sentence can create a strong and assertive tone, while placing the object at the beginning can create a more passive and reflective tone.

It’s important to consider the function and placement of the subject and object when crafting your sentences to contotended tone and meaning.

The Difference Between Active and Passive Voice When Using Verbs as Predicates  

When it comes to writing, understanding the difference between active and passive voice is crucial. The way a verb is used as a predicate greatly impacts the tone and style of your writing.

  • Active voice is often preferred because it adds more clarity, energy, and directness to your sentences. In active voice, the subject is doing the action, which makes the sentence clearer and more engaging.
  • In contrast, passive voice can make your writing appear dull and indirect. In passive voice, the subject is receiving the action, which often leads to unclear or confusing sentences.

Mastering the art of active voice can make a significant difference in the quality of your writing.

How to Use Modifiers with Verbs as Predicates  

Modifiers are words or phrases that describe, identify, or qualify a particular aspect of a sentence. When used with verbs as predicates, modifiers enhance the meaning of the sentence and provide more clarity. To use modifiers effectively, it is essential to follow a few steps.

  1. Identify the predicate verb that needs the modifier.
  2. Decide on the kind of modifier that will best suit the sentence – adverbs, adjectives, or phrases.
  3. Ensure that the modifier is placed close to the verb it is modifying.
  4. Make sure that there is no ambiguity in what the modifier is modifying.
  5. Read the sentence aloud to check for proper syntax and coherence.

Using modifiers correctly will help create stronger and more precise sentences, making your writing both effective and engaging.

Rules for Forming Compound Subjects & Objects when Using Verbs as Predicates    

In English grammar, forming compound subjects and objects can certainly be tricky, especially when using verbs as predicates. To ensure clarity and accuracy in your writing, it is important to follow some basic rules when combining multiple nouns or pronouns in a sentence.

  • For example, when using a conjunction between two or more singular subjects, the verb must also be singular.

On the other hand, when using a conjunction between two or more plural subjects, the verb must be plural as well. Similarly, for compound objects, the verb form must agree with the number and person of the compound direct object or indirect object. By following these simple rules, you can write clear and concise sentences that effectively convey your message.

How to Use Complex Sentences with Verbs as Predicates  

Using complex sentences with verbs as predicates can be a tricky task, but it can make your writing more sophisticated and effective. To start, here are the steps:

  1. Identify the independent clause, which can stand alone as a sentence, and then add a dependent clause, which can’t. The dependent clause will often start with a subordinating conjunction such as “because,” “although,” or “while.” Make sure the dependent clause adds relevant information and doesn’t create confusion.
  2. Use parallelism, meaning using similar structures or patterns in both the independent and dependent clauses. This adds balance and clarity to your writing.
  3. Avoid overusing complex sentences and consider breaking them down into simpler sentences for clarity.

With these steps in mind, you can confidently use complex sentences with verbs as predicates to enhance your writing.

The Role of Negation in Sentences that Use Verbs as Predicated   

Negation plays an important role in sentences that use verbs as predicates. When negation, or the use of negative words, is employed in a sentence, it changes the entire meaning.

  • For example, consider the sentence “John eats pizza.” If we add the word “not” to the sentence, becoming “John does not eat pizza,” the meaning changes from a statement of fact to a statement of denial.

Negation can be used to manipulate the truth, express differing opinions, or simply add emphasis to a sentence. It is a powerful tool in the hands of skilled writers and speakers.

Common Mistakes When Using Verbs As Predicates

Verbs are incredibly important parts of speech as they are used to convey actions or states of being in a sentence. However, misusing them or placing them in the wrong tense or form can completely change the meaning of a sentence. Some common mistakes when using verbs as predicates includes:

Subject-verb disagreement

  • Using the wrong tense or aspect
  • Using the wrong verb form
  • Using unnecessary helping verbs

It’s crucial to pay attention to the context of your sentence and use the appropriate verb to ensure that your message is clear and effective. Being mindful of these common mistakes can greatly improve the quality of your writing or speaking.

Tips for Avoiding Common Mistakes in Writing Sentences With Verb Predicates

Writing sentences can be tricky, especially when it comes to verb predicates. A verb predicate is a sentence that contains a verb and describes the action or state of the subject. However, many writers make common mistakes when writing sentences with verb predicates. To avoid these mistakes, it is important to remember a few tips.

  • Always check for subject-verb agreement. The subject and verb in a sentence should match in number, person, and tense.
  • Avoid dangling participles and misplaced modifiers. These can confuse and make your sentence sound awkward.
  • Vary your sentence structure to make your writing more engaging.

By following these tips, you can write sentences with verb predicates that are clear, concise, and effective.


Predicates are the part of a sentence that tells what is happening or being said. There are three main types of predicates: nouns, adjectives and verbs. Modifiers can be used to add more information when using verb predicates and compound subjects/objects should also be formed correctly for sentences with verb predicates. Finally, it’s important to avoid common mistakes when writing sentences with verb predicates such as incorrect subject-verb agreement or tense consistency errors. With these tips in mind you should have no problem identifying and constructing effective predicate statements!


What is a predicate?

A predicate is a word or phrase that describes the action in a sentence, or makes an assertion about the subject. It typically follows the subject of the sentence and it is sometimes referred to as a verb phrase. For example, in the sentence “The dog barked,” “barked” is the predicate.

What are types of predicates?

There are three main types of predicates: noun predicates, adjective predicates and verb predicates. A noun predicate names or renames the subject while an adjective predicate gives more information about it. A verb predicate expresses an action that the subject takes or something that happens to it.

How can I identify a predicate in a sentence? 

To identify a predicate in a sentence, look for the word or phrase that follows the subject and describes what action is being taken or what is happening to the subject. For example, in the sentence “The child laughed,” “laughed” is the verb predicate because it expresses an action being taken by the subject.

How can I use predicates in sentences?

When forming sentences with predicates, start by choosing a subject and then add a verb that expresses an action taken or something happening to it. For example, you could say “The girl walked,” where “walked” is the verb predicate expressing an action taken by the subject. You can also modify verbs as predicates using adverbs or other modifiers to give more information about the action.

Are there rules for forming compound subjects and objects when using verbs as predicates? 

Yes, when making compound subjects or objects from two or more nouns with a verb predicate, use either a coordinating conjunction like “and” or an adverbial prepositional phrase to link them together. For example, instead of saying “The girl and the dog walked,” you could say “The girl and the dog went for a walk,” where “for a walk” is an adverbial prepositional phrase linking the subject and object.

What are some common mistakes to avoid when writing sentences with verb predicates?

When writing sentences with verb predicates, make sure to use the correct verb tense that matches the context of the sentence. Additionally, avoid using dangling modifiers which occur when a modifier is used incorrectly in relation to the word it modifies. For example, instead of saying “Walking down the street slowly,” you should say “She walked slowly down the street.”

Are there any tips for avoiding mistakes when writing sentences with verb predicates?

Yes, read your sentences carefully and make sure that each part of the sentence makes sense on its own. Additionally, practice forming different types of sentences so that you become more familiar with how verbs are used as predicates in sentences. Finally, always double-check your work for errors before submitting it. With a bit of practice, you’ll soon be able to write sentences with verb predicates correctly and confidently.

These are just some of the questions you might have when learning about predicates. If you need additional help, look for more information online or consult a grammar guide to gain further insights into this subject matter.

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