Kinds of sentences in English grammar indicates the classifications of sentences based on their meaning, sense, and expression. Here we will discuss all kinds of sentences, their meaning, structures, usages, and variations. According to the rules of English grammar, there are basically 5 kinds of sentences in English such as assertive, interrogative, imperative, optative, and exclamatory.
This lesson is an important part of basic grammar learning in English language. Moreover, without proper understanding of kinds of sentences, it will be really difficult for you to understand transformation of sentences in English grammar.
What is A Sentence?
A sentences or speech is the organized expression of human mind and conversation through which we express our thoughts, wishes, pleasure, and sorrow. What we express in our daily life from dawn to dusk are included in 5 categories of sentences. So, please remember one thing that this classification is not based on structure of sentences but on meaning. Each class belongs to a specific expression.
Let’s see some examples of sentences:
He likes to take coffee in the morning.
Do this work now.
May you get A+ in the final exam.
Kinds of Sentences in English
Based on the meaning and expression, we classify sentences into 5 classes. First of all, have a look on the list below, meaning of each category along with examples.
Assertive Sentence – Any general event or statement
For Example: Traffic jam is a common problem – (expressing general issue-Assertive Sentence)
Interrogative Sentence – question on any topic
For Example: Do you like music? – (question-Interrogative Sentence)
Imperative Sentence – Order, advice, and request
For Example: Finish your homework timely. – (order to do a particular job-Imperative Sentence)
Optative Sentence – Wish and prayer
For Example: May Allah help you. – (Prayer to the God-Optative Sentence)
Exclamatory Sentence – Expression of joy, sorrow, and wonder
For Example: Hurrah! we have won the final match – (Expressing joy of winning -Exclamatory Sentence)
Theory of Classifications of Sentences
I hope you have already got a basic idea on kinds of sentences in English. However, i would like to focus on the usages and variations of each class of sentences one by one. So, i have come up with a magical theory through which you can easily remember all the variations of all kinds of sentences easily in short form.
In this way, when you will try to mark the class of a sentence, you will not forget any variation within them.
Here is the theory i want to use to summarize all the variations of all sentences.
A2 + 2I6 + O2 + E3
Does it look strange?
Well, it should be! It looks like a mathematical theory but we are not studying math here. Actually, i have created this theory or structure based on the features or variations in all kinds of sentences.
For an example, A indicates Assertive sentence and an assertive sentence can be divided into 2 categories: affirmative and negative sentences. So, when you are seeing the element A2, it indicates that an assertive sentences has 2 categories. In this way, each kind is marked with a number based on its variations.
Now notice the abbreviation of each term of the theory.
Explanation of The Theory
|A2 = Assertive ( Affirmative / Negative )|
|2I6 = Interrogative 3 + Imperative3|
|Interrogative 3 = Wh-question/verbal question/tag question|
|Imperative 3 = order / advice / request|
|O2 = Optative ( wish / pray )|
|E3 = Exclamatory ( joy / sorrow / wonder )|
I hope now you have no problem in understanding the theory based on kinds of sentences. Now, let’s discuss in detail about each kind of sentences along with meaning, variations, and examples.
A2 – Assertive Sentence
In general the sentences through which we express the general events or statement in our daily life are known as assertive sentences.
I want to meet you on business purpose tomorrow.
He does not like to have fun always.
Structure of Assertive Sentence: Subject + Verb + Object/Complement +Adjunct
You know, the sentences which we use as general expressions in our daily life can be divided into two sections. One is positive statement and another one is negative statement. Now here, according to the grammar, we will classify assertive sentences into two classes such as:
- Affirmative sentence – Positive Statement
- Negative sentence – Negative Statement
Now see the chart. It will help you to distinguish each category separately.
I help him always.
Traffic jam is a common problem.
Soham plays cricket everyday.
Many people like wrestling match.
I do not help him.
He isn’t waiting here.
Soham does not football much.
Not many people have their own airplane.
Now you should have a question in your mind.
What is that?
Yes, it is about the signs of recognizing negative sentences. Because, in examples above, you have noticed that the word ‘not’ is present in each sentence. But, the word ‘not’ is not only the sign of negative.
Is the word ‘not’ only the sign of negative?
Certainly ‘no’. There are a few words in English language which are used in sentences to express negative expressions. If you don’t know about them, you will certainly make a mistake in the usages of language. So, regarding this point, I have given a chart below for you showing all the negative words or phrases in English.
Now, study these words along with examples below
|Negative words||Meaning||Examples in sentences|
|No||Indicating element||There’s no change in environment.|
|None||Indicating object or person||We wanted tickets, but there|
|No one / Nobody||Indicating person||I saw no one/nobody waiting there.|
|Nothing||Indicating object||I saw nothing important here.|
|Nowhere||Indicating place||There was nowhere to keep the box.|
|Few (countable) / Little (uncountable)||Indicating quantity||Few people were interested.|
There was little help from govt.
|Never||Indicating time||He was never a doctor.|
|Seldom / Rarely||Indicating time||We seldom/rarely go to market.|
|No longer||Indicating time||Robin no longer lives here.|
|Hardly / Scarcely||Indicating time||We hardly/scarcely see Eagle in the sky.|
|Neither / Nor||Indicating double subject||Neither you nor he helped me .|
I3 – Interrogative Sentence
The statement through which we express any question or inquiry is known as interrogative sentence. An interrogation sign (?) is obligatory at the end of this sentence.
Where does the person stay now?
Do you want to see the place?
Structure of Interrogative sentence: Wh-question + auxiliary verb + subject + main verb + object +?
Now compare these sentences according to the structure.
|Wh-question||Auxiliary verb||subject||Main verb||adjunct|
|Auxiliary verb||subject||Main verb||adjunct|
Interrogative Sentences can be divided into 3 classes:
- Verbal Question
- Tag Question
Now observe the chart of the classes:
|Wh-Question||Verbal Question||Tag Question|
|Who / what / whom / why / when / where / which / how||Am / is / are / was / were / have / has / had / shall / wil / does / do /did / can / could / would||Doesn’t he? / don’t I? / isn’t he? / won’t you?|
Who is the chief guest?
Why did he buy this book?
Where do they play?
Is he reading now?
Does she like mango?
Will you meet him?
He plays cricket, doesn’t he?
You give him this, don’t you?
We are not thinking, are we?
There are some other minor classes of questions in English. They are Indirect questions and Echo questions.
When we put a subject clause before a question statement, it is regarded as an indirect question. See the sentences below and you will easily understand the structure of indirect question.
We need to know what the rules are.
Could you tell me where Rajshahi Airport is, please.
Do you know when the doctor comes.
Sometimes, we become surprised observing any event or action before us. we cannot believe the scene easily. in such situations, we ask short questions not to get an answer but to express the wonder in our mind. And such questions are regarded as echo questions in English.
You eat what?
He knew who?
They’ve done & what?
I3 – Imperative Sentence
The sentences through which we express any order, advice, or request in our speeches are known as imperative sentences.
Structure of Imperative sentence: Verb + Object + Adjunct / Extra
|Never touch||this box.|
|Adjunct + Verb||Object|
Note: 01 – Remember, in imperative sentence, in case of order, the subject is always bare and it always indicates ‘you’ in general.
In English imperative sentences can be divided into 3 classes such as order, advice, and request. Now, I will show you a chart so that you can easily classify each class separately.
|Sign words: ( Verb + Object )||Sign words: (should / must / ought to)||Sign words: (please / kindly)|
|Wait here till afternoon.|
See the building.
Do not touch me.
|You should help the poor.|
You must obey your parents.
You ought to read newspaper.
|Please come here timely.|
Kindly consider the matter.
Please do not go there.
If in imperative sentence the subject does not become ‘you’ but (1st person-I/We) or (3rd person-He/ She/They) and express any proposal or request in sentence, the structure of the imperative sentence will be changed. In this case, the structure will be as:
Structure : Let + ( Subject’s objective form ) + Main Verb +Adjunct/Extra.
|Let||Objective form of Subject||Main Verb||Adjunct||Adjunct 2|
There are some certain phrases in imperative sentences which can be used as subject.
All of you sit down!
Everyone stop what you’re doing.
Here, I will give you some examples of most used phrases in imperative sentences which are available in social Medias. Try to learn these phrases and their expression in practical fields.
Save the Padma river . (in case of slogan)
Visit Shat Gumbuj mosque. – (in case of advertisement)
Have a chocolate. – (in case of proposal)
Have a nice holiday. – (in case of wishing)
Enjoy yourselves. – (in case of wishing)
Shut up / Go away – I’m busy./ Get lost. – (to express hatred)
O2 – Optative Sentence
The sentence through which we express any wish or prayer is known as optative sentence. Besides, you should remember that the word ‘may’ is the sign of an optative sentence.
Structure of Optative sentence: May + Subject + Verb + Object + Adjunct / Extra
Optative sentences can be divided into 2 classes: wish and prayer
|Wish||May you win the prize.|
May you reach there timely.
|Pray||May Allah bless you.|
May God help you.
E3 – Exclamatory Sentence
The sentences through which we express the state or impression of our mind such as joy, sorrow, or wonder are known as exclamatory sentences. In addition, in an exclamatory sentence, you must put an exclamation mark (!) after a word or a sentence.
Structure of Exclamatory sentence:
Word ! + Subject + Verb + Object + Adjunct
What / How + Adjective + Noun + Subject + Verb+!
|Hurrah !||we||have won||the match||today|
So, you have already observed that an exclamatory sentence can be of 3 types: joy / sorrow / wonder
Hurrah! they have won the prize.
Alas! he is dead now.
What a nice place it was!
How fine the morning is!
How warm the water is!
In exclamatory sentence we express our emotion generally. But in some cases, we can also express our emotion using some phrases instead of using sentences.
Notice these phrases:
What a journey!
What lovely flowers!
Oh, my God!
Now, look at this theory on kinds of sentences once again: A2 + 2I6 + O2 + E3 and tell me if you can remember all the variations of all kinds of sentences, you have learnt above. Hope you have already understood that how this magical theory can help you to remember all the essential features of sentences in English.
If you want to test your skill in recognizing right kind of sentences, you can check out these exercises and understand your lacking. To understand other functions of sentences in English, you can check out these lessons Analysis of Sentences and Parts of Speech which are also based on sentences and their usages.
That’s all for today.
In conclusion, i hope this lesson on kinds of sentences in English will help you a lot to recognize sentences based on their meaning and expression. Let us know your thoughts using our comment box below.