Unit 4

Grammar

The complete sentence

The sentence is a grouping of words that together express a complete thought. Every paragraph consists of one or more sentences. Read the sentences in the following paragraph:

In 1939, the Golden Gate International Exposition opened on Treasure Island in the middle of the San Francisco Bay. It provided thousands of visitors with new glimpses of the world, past, present and future. Thousands of cars drove over the newly opened San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge and parked on the flat man-made outskirts of Treasure Island. Fairgoers were treated to hundreds of exhibits from across the country and around the world.

 

Study the first sentence of the above paragraph.

"In 1939, the Golden Gate International Exposition opened on Treasure Island in the middle of the San Francisco Bay."

Note that it is a sentence because it:

    1. communicates to us a complete message,
    2. starts with a capital letter,
    3. ends with a period.

Look for sentences in the paragraph above and copy them below.

1.



2.



3.



4.




Subject and Predicate
        

Diego Rivera (1886-1957) was one of Mexico's most important painters and a major artist of the twentieth century. Born in 1886 in Guanajuato, Rivera studied traditional European artistic styles at the Academia de San Carlos in Mexico City. Rivera combined this classical training with the influence of Mexican folk artist Jose Guadalupe Posada, emerging as an accomplished painter with a distinctly Mexican style by the age of sixteen.

In 1907 Rivera traveled to Spain to study the works of Goya, El Greco, and Brueghel at Madrid's El Prado museum. Later he moved to Paris and became fascinated with the avante-garde Cubist movement which Pablo Picasso founded. After four years devoted to Cubism, Rivera began to question the movement.

Influenced by the Mexican Revolution (1914-15) and the Russian Revolution (1917), Rivera believed that art should play a role in empowering working people to understand their own histories. He did not want his art to be isolated in museums and galleries, but made accessible to the people, spread on the walls of public buildings. To this end, Rivera traveled to Italy to study early Renaissance fresco. When he returned to Mexico, he was ready to formulate his own style of public paintings that would speak directly to the working and indigenous peoples of Mexico.

The opportunity to implement his new ideas came in 1921, when a new cultural program was instituted to bring art to the masses. The Mexican government commissioned Jose Clemente Orozco, David Alvaro Siquieros, and Rivera to paint a series of fresco cycles for public buildings, instigating what became known as the Mexican Mural Renaissance. These great artists painted on the walls of public buildings across Mexico. Their works created a new iconography that represented complex social and national themes, religious motifs, and a pre-Hispanic world view.

When political repression intensified in Mexico in the late twenties, Rivera was enticed to paint in the United States. During his first commission in San Francisco in 1931, Rivera and his wife, artist Frida Kahlo, were extremely well-received. Rivera was quite pleased, therefore, to return to San Francisco in 1940 to execute the Pan American Unity mural for the Golden Gate International Exposition. This work represented a culmination of hundreds of murals painted for the public, and also demonstrated his affectionate relationship with San Francisco.

In addition to being a celebrated and controversial artist, Diego Rivera was also a provocative political activist who incited debate not only in Mexico, but also in the USA and Soviet Union. Since his death in 1957, his hundreds of public artworks, his many oils and watercolors, and his political daring continue to contribute invaluably to the development of public art across the Americas.

 

Subject and Predicate

Every sentence has two parts: the subject and the predicate.

The subject is a person, animal, place, or the thing we are talking about in the sentence.
The predicate tells about the subject, expressing action, opinion, or state of being.


The subject can go first in the sentence.
The Golden Gate International Expositionopened on Treasure Island in the middle of the San Francisco Bay in 1939.
SubjectPredicate


The subject can go at the end of the sentence.
In 1939, there opened on Treasure Island, in the middle of the San Francisco Bay,The Golden Gate International Exposition.
PredicateSubject


The subject can go in the middle of the sentence.
In 1939, on Treasure Island in the middle of the San Francisco Bay, The Golden Gate International Exposition opened.
SubjectPredicate


Subject and predicate agreement

The subject and predicate ought to agree with each other in person and number.

It is not correct to say, "The mural by Diego Rivera were installed in City College."

It is correct to say, "The mural by Diego Rivera was installed in City College.

In other words, if the subject is in the singular, the predicate is in the singular. Also, the plural predicate goes with the plural subject. As you see, there needs to be agreement between subject and verb. The verb is conjugated according to the person and number of the subject.

Number is a grammatical term that refers to singular or plural.

The singular refers to one single person, animal, place or thing
The plural refers to more than one person, animal, place or thing


Person is a grammatical term that refers to who is talking (the subject).

Singular personal pronouns are: I, you, he, she or it
Plural personal pronouns are: we, you, they





"Rivera believed that art should play a role in empowering working people to understand their own histories."




Exercise 1: Underline the subject of each sentence in this paragraph:

Diego Rivera (1886-1957) was one of Mexico's most important painters and a major artist of the twentieth century. Born in 1886 in Guanajuato, Rivera studied traditional European artistic styles at the Academia de San Carlos in Mexico City. Rivera combined this classical training with the influence of Mexican folk artist Jose Guadalupe Posada, emerging as an accomplished painter with a distinctly Mexican style by the age of sixteen.

Exercise 2: Underline the predicate of each sentence in this paragraph:

In 1907 Rivera traveled to Spain to study the works of Goya, El Greco, and Brueghel at Madrid's El Prado museum. Later he moved to Paris and became fascinated with the avante-garde Cubist movement that Pablo Picasso founded. After four years devoted to Cubism, Rivera began to question the movement.

Other important parts of speech

The adjective is a part of speech that clarifies or determines the number of a noun or subject. It is the word that designates a quality or determines a limit or extension. Examples of adjectives are: happy, hungry, furious, blue, elegant.

Exercise 3: Underline the adjectives in this paragraph:

Influenced by the Mexican Revolution (1914-15) and the Russian Revolution (1917), Rivera believed that art should play a role in empowering working people to understand their own histories. He did not want his art to be isolated in museums and galleries, but made accessible to the people, spread on the walls of public buildings. To this end, Rivera traveled to Italy to study early Renaissance fresco. When he returned to Mexico, he was ready to formulate his own style of public paintings that would speak directly to the working and indigenous peoples of Mexico.

The adverb is the part of speech that performs the following functions:

A Modify the verb

B Modify an adjective

C Modify another adverb

There are different kinds of adverbs

Mood: well, badly, poorly, therefore, and the majority of adverbs end in "_ly." Many are formed from adjectives by adding the _ly ending: easily, finally, casually, etc.

Time: late, early, always, although, tomorrow, now, already, etc.

Place: here, there, over there, far, below, above, inside, etc.

Quantity: many, more, fewer, much, enough, almost, etc.

Affirmation: yes, also, certainly

Negation: no, neither, never

Doubt: maybe, perhaps, possibly

Qualifiers: when, where, what, how many, how, etc.



Exercise 4: Underline the adverbs in this paragraph:

When political repression intensified in Mexico in the late twenties, Rivera was enticed to paint in the United States. During his first commission in San Francisco in 1931, Rivera and his wife, artist Frida Kahlo, were extremely well received. Rivera was quite pleased, therefore, to return to San Francisco in 1940 to execute the Pan American Unity mural for the Golden Gate International Exposition. This work represented a culmination of hundreds of murals painted for the public, and also demonstrated his affectionate relationship with San Francisco.