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Concrete Noun

Term Definition
Concrete Noun

A concrete noun is the name of an object which may be perceived by one or more of the five senses. These nouns are derived from the concrete noun which is the name of the person or thing which is in the condition.

Introduction to concrete nouns

Do you want to know more about what the part of grammar called the concrete noun is? 

The purpose of this glossary entry is to help you meet this desire. By the time you're done reading this, you'll have thorough knowledge of the concrete noun. 

A concrete noun is simply an object that can be discerned through one of the five physical senses (sight, hearing, smell, taste, or touch). 

The opposite of the concrete noun is the abstract noun, which can only be seen with the mind's eye and not with the physical senses. 

Many nouns that are commonly used in everyday life tend to qualify as a concrete noun, since they primarily help describe the world around us. 

How to use concrete nouns in sentences 

Here is an example of the concrete noun being used correctly in a sentence. 

"The instructions told the woman to go to through the dark blue door in order to meet up with the detective she had hired."

In this sentence, all the nouns in the sentence qualify as a concrete noun. 

Now, here is a sentence in which the concrete noun is being used in an incorrect way.

"The woman exclaimed that her husband's plan for making money was nothing but a pie in the sky, and that he should thus give it up." 

In this sentence, pie in the sky is not exactly a concrete noun, since it is more of a figure of speech representing an abstract idea.

Just in case you need them, here are a couple rules for you regarding the right use of the concrete noun. 

1. In order to tell whether a noun is a concrete noun, just think to yourself: can you perceive it with one of your physical senses. "Science", for example, would not be a concrete noun. However, the "science building" would in fact be a concrete noun. 

2. For practical purposes, it probably is not very important to consciously identify the difference between a concrete noun and an abstract noun. In everyday language use, people tend to intuitively understand the difference between the one and the other. 

Additional information - Discussion and usage

When people first began creating the part of speech known as the noun, they probably began with the concrete noun. This is reminiscent, for example, of the Bible, where God is said to have shown Adam all the creatures of the world and then asked him to name them. This is the basic function of the concrete noun: it allows a person to see an object in the empirical, physical world, and then to proceed to give it a name. Moreover, the concrete noun is indispensable for purposes of basic communication, since referring to certain objects in the physical world is a key way in which people are able to coordinate their actions across space and time. 

It is also worth noting that the concrete noun—or rather, the interplay between the concrete noun and the abstract noun—is crucial for the genre of literature known as poetry. This is because in poetry, the tendency is to represent an abstract idea through a concrete noun, or to use the concrete noun as a symbol or metaphor of the abstract idea. Through this means, poetry is able to bridge the gap between the world of the body and the world of the mind, making an abstract noun more concrete and a concrete noun more abstract. 

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Synonyms: concrete-noun

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