Subject (definition)

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A syntactic element of a sentence that is one of two main constituents. The subject in a sentence is almost always a noun phrase containing an agent or a noun that is performing some sort of action. In English, the subject is usually linked to its complimentary constituent the predicate, which contains a verb and modifies the subject, indicating the subject’s subsequent action or state of being.

See Also

Object (definition) Indirect Object (definition) Case (definition)

External Links

Warning: use articles with caution, they often include inaccurate information.


  • Crystal, David. A Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics. The language library. Oxford, UK: Blackwell, 1997.
  • Crystal, David, and David Crystal. The Penguin Dictionary of Language. London: Penguin, 1999.
  • Matthews, P. H. The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.