Identifying the Phrase

Last updated: May 27, 2018 at 1:53 am

branches photoBoth the phrase and the clause are parts of the sentence. They are both word teams, but there is a major difference between a phrase and a clause.

A clause is a word team in a sentence containing both a subject and a verb. On the other hand, a phrase is a word team in a sentence that has neither subject nor verb.

Here are some examples.

The following four sentences tell a story about the friendship between two North American countries. The first sentence contains two clauses: that is two subjects and predicates, but the remaining three sentences contains just one clause: that is: one subject and predicate.

Note: a sentence may contain just one cause or several clauses.

Sentence 1

Campobello is a resort island on the bay of Fundy off the New Brunswick-Maine border line where Franklin D. Roosevelt owned a summer residence.

Clauses in Sentence 1

1. Campobello is a resort island on the bay of Fundy off the New Brunswick-Maine border line

2. where Franklin D. Roosevelt owned a summer residence.

Phrases in Sentence 1

  1. on the bay
  2. of Fundy
  3. off the New Brunswick-Maine border line

Sentence 2

The wartime President of the United States visited this little island during the stressful years of the Second World War. (One-clause sentence)

Phrases in Sentence 2

  1. of the United States
  2. during the stressful years
  3. of the Second World War

Sentence 3

A cairn of New Brunswick red granite was dedicated to the memory of this great man by his Canadian friends. (One-clause sentence)

Phrases in Sentence 3

  1. of New Brunswick red granite
  2. to the memory
  3. of this great man
  4. by this Canadian friends.

Sentence 4

It stands as another symbol of the friendship between Canada and the United States. (One-clause sentence)

Phrases in Sentence 4

1.as another symbol

2. of the friendship

3.between Canada and the United States

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