What is syntax? Syntax Definition and Examples

Published on 03-Sep-2022

The Different Structures in Linguistics 

The scientific study of any human language is known as Linguistics. All the languages the World speaks follow their own set of rules. The rules depend on the context, social system order, nature, and grammar structure. In linguistics, social and cognitive aspects are analyzed, which is why this scientific study came to be called Linguistics. Today we will learn about how linguistics breaks down language structures and what they are.

Let's start with the basics.

Writing is a combination of sentences. In any writing, different sentences are bound together using connective verbs. The punctuation mark lets us know when writing has paused or begun with a new topic. A sentence, however, has to follow its structures. A ruling is formed through phrases that contain a subject, a verb, and an object.

In Linguistics, the study of the phrases and breaking them up to analyze is called Syntax. The syntax is also the study of morpheme; morpheme is the possible breakdown of words in the minor lexical order. 

Let us see an example of breaking apart a word to see its Syntax.

Un              Break               Able

Morpheme    word              word

In the example, we see the breakdown of a word in lexical order. As we can see, the words "Break" and "Able" can stand alone as they are independent words. The "Un" is a morpheme responsible for the word's primary meaning but cannot stand alone independently. This is how Syntax is used to study the field of linguistics more analytically. 

Now let us see an example of the breakdown of a simple sentence. 

He       drove         his car past the ocean view.

Subject         past tense verb               object

In this example, we see the basic language syntax of a sentence sequence, i.e., the subject, the verb, and the object.  

The Syntax varies depending on the different types of sentences. There are about 4 varieties of sentences based on the structure.

What is syntax?

Simple Sentence

Simple sentences are assertive sentences with a subject, verb, and object. 

Example: Mary prayed every day in the church. 

Compound Sentence

Compound sentences are two independent clauses connected using conjunction. The independent clauses are phrases that can stand alone as a sentence but connecting them with coordinating conjunction makes the sentence longer and more detailed. 

Example: She rides her bike to work every morning and never forgets to take enough water for the road. 

Complex Sentence

Complex sentence consists of one or more independent clauses and one dependent clause connected with a subordinating conjunction. Complex sentences tend to be more informative and detailed compared to compound sentences. 

Example: She got a C for her papers even though she studies harder than most students in her class. 

Compound-Complex Sentence

A compound-complex sentence is a formation of two or more independent clauses connected with two or more dependent clauses. Compound - Complex sentences usually are longer and use more connectives than other sentences.

Example: I will be able to eat my favorite snacks, but before that, I have to clean my whole room and then take a shower. 

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