Part of speech

From Glottopedia
Revision as of 23:51, 21 July 2007 by Skrylov (talk | contribs)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The term part of speech is a synonym of word class.


This old term has long been opaque and has tended to be supplanted by other terms in the 20th century, especially word class. However, there are of course many criteria by which one could classify words, so word class is not fully transparent either. It is perhaps for this reason that many linguists continue to use this term, especially in typology (e.g. Hengeveld et al. 2004, van Lier 2006).


Part of speech is a loan translation of Latin pars orationis, which has been the main Latin term for word classes since antiquity. Oratio means 'speech', but can also be used for 'sentence'.


  • Hengeveld, Kees & Jan Rijkhoff & Anna Siewierska (2004). Parts-of-speech systems and word order. Journal of Linguistics 40. 527—570.
  • van Lier, Eva 2006. Parts-of-Speech systems and dependent clauses: A typological study. Folia Linguistica

Other languages