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Are there any words that can be used as a noun, verb, adjective or adverb?

For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Language

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    Best Answer - Chosen by Voting
    Many words in English can have more than one part of speech.
    Examples:
    - 'fast' can be a verb, a noun, an adjective and an adverb.
    - 'light' can be a verb, a noun and an adjective.
    - 'advance' can be a noun, a verb and an adjective.
    - 'last' can be a verb, a noun, an adverb and a determiner.
    - 'high' can be a noun, an adverb and an adjective.
    - 'low' can be a verb, a noun, an adjective and an adverb.
    - 'well' can be a verb (well up), a noun, an adjective and an adverb.

     

    There are plenty!

    I'd suggest observing how the words are treated in context, instead of learning them word-by-word. I'll use Learner's example of "light".

    As a noun: "a light", "the light", "lights"(as plural). Or if it sits where the subject should be - eg. "light is...(description)" - then you can assume it's a noun here.

    As a verb: "to light", "be lighting", "he/she/it lights". If it sits where you think there should be a verb (eg. after the subject: "you light..."), then assume it is a verb and guess the meaning from there.

    As an adjective: "(a) light (something)". Adjectives usually sit before nouns, after the particle a/an/the. So if you find it here, assume it has a descriptive quality: a light colour, light person, light bulb.

    As an adverb: this is pretty easy, most adverbs will have "-ly" added to the end. Again, look at where it sits in the sentence: usually directly before or after the verb, or placed at the end of the sentence if the focus is on the action: "she skipped over the stones lightly". In a case such as "lightly colour" or "colour lightly", you can guess "colour" is a verb an not a noun, since it's so close to an adverb.

    Not every word will be used in this way (eg. "the box", "to box" are fine but "boxly" is not recognised), but this may help you identify them.

     

    This is Modern English! We do whatever our little hearts desire. We can take any word in the language and do whatever we want. In grammar there is a way to do everything. It may not be used much, you may have never heard it before, but it's out there, somewhere, in Grammarsville, USA. We got it from the English who got it from some Friesians who got it from some Norse... you get the idea; it goes way back.

    That's what language is used for; but language does have its limits. Good Q !

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