Phrase is the combination of words with no complete meanings. Like if I say, “in the field” the question will come in your mind WHAT in the field? So it means “in the field” doesn’t give complete meanings and our mind is left with questions. And if I say, “I saw scarecrow in the field.” Now you got the complete meanings and you mind is not stuffed with questions. This is what we mean by complete meanings which a phrases lack.
Phrase is comprised upon TWO things
Head is the most important part of speech and information in a phrase that is why the phrase is named after it, like, in noun phrase noun is the most important part of it, similarly verb in verb phrase etc. Dependents are all other words or parts of speech that are dependent to the head of the phrase.
Types of phrases
There are SIX types of phrases
1. Noun phrase
Despite explaining one by one it is the better idea to explain maximum of them in a single example. Look at the following sentence.
A boy is reading novel in the library.
Now we have to divide above sentence into phrases. We can extract the following phrases out of it.
1. a boy, 2. the library, 3. novel in the library.
Heads of the phrases: 1. boy, 2. library
and 3. novel
reading novel in the library.
the phrase: reading (verb)
in the library.
Head of the phrases: preposition (in)