1. noodlepower
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    noodlepower Member

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    Can colors be nouns?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by noodlepower, Sep 22, 2012.

    I feel really stupid for asking this but it's been bugging me for a week now.

    My daughter is in 1st grade and they are learning about nouns. On her homework, she had to fill in the blank with a noun. The sentence was basically this:

    ______ is my favorite color.

    So, my daughter inserts the word "Green."

    Green is my favorite color.

    And I'm thinking... wait, isn't green an adjective? After all, green is describing "my favorite color." But then I was like, wait a minute.... favorite is the adjective because it's describing color. Totally confused.

    Green is my favorite color. <---- How is 'Green' in this sentence considered a noun?
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Green is also a concept, which makes it a noun in that context.

    Here I've used a more active verb to make the "noun-ness" more obvious. Green is clearly the subject, and therefore is contextually a noun. It isn't applied to any other entity, as would be required of an adjective.

    Does that help?
     
  3. noodlepower
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    noodlepower Member

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    Ah, ok! I see! Thank you! It was kind of confusing but in that context, yes - I get it.
     
  4. marktx
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    marktx Contributing Member

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    You can also use a color like this:

    "The green of his eyes was a green that reached out to her eyes, beckoning, challenging, coaxing. Her mind was awash in the green, could not break itself free of the green..."

    (From my upcoming romance, Mr. Green.)
     
  5. Pheonix
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    Pheonix A Singer of Space Operas and The Fourth Mod of RP Staff Contributor

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    marktx If you actually get that published, I will be green with envy. :D

    If something 'is' it's probably a noun.

    "Green is my favorite color." 'Green' is receiving the action from the verb, 'is'. Now if you were to say, "Greenish blue is my favorite color," blue would be the noun, with 'greenish' as an adjective. The color 'blue' is still being used as the subject and noun there.

    Does that make sense? If a word receives the action, and it isn't modifying or stepping in for another word, chances are that what you are dealing with is a noun.
     
  6. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    You have to be careful with that logic, Phoenix. Forms of to be are often used to connect adjectives to a noun or pronoun:

    Although the inverted form is uncommon in modern usage, it is still valid syntax. In both these examples, angry remains an adjective.
     
  7. marktx
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    marktx Contributing Member

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    If something like Mr. Green got published, I think we'd all be a little green. Although perhaps not with envy.
     

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