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 Post subject: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 8:50 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 17, 2010 2:53 pm
Posts: 138
Question:

Birmingham is in the centre of England.

Could someone tell me what the word 'centre' is? I am wavering between 'noun' and 'preposition'.
Aargh - its times like this when I question my schooling!


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:15 am 
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Joined: Sat Dec 03, 2011 3:14 pm
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it's a preposition


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:16 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:47 pm
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Location: Warwickshire
Hoping there's no grammar in it ...


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:47 am 
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Beg to differ - "centre" is a noun :D


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:06 am 
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I'd say noun too.


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:19 am 
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Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 8:30 am
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It's a noun. It's just that we're so used to seeing possessives done with apostrophes we're brought up short when they're spelt out in full. "Birmingham is in England's centre" makes it more obvious. It's also slightly confusing that it's a noun which looks a bit adjective-y. But few would doubt that "Docklands" is a noun in "Canary Wharf is in London's Docklands", would they? Expand out the possessive, and there you are.


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:10 pm 
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I still think it's used as a preposition in this sentence - 'centre' states the
position of/relation between Birmingham and England.

It is not used as a noun in this particular sentence.


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:57 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 10:30 am
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Sorry, still disagree leameamum. There are two prepositions in the sentence: "in" and "of". "The centre" however is a noun, meaning the middle or mid-point. Look it up in a dictionary - it clearly says it's a noun.


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 7:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
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Location: East Kent
I would say centre is the noun, in is the preposition


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 Post subject: Re: Help with question
PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:54 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 8:30 am
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leanmeamum wrote:
I still think it's used as a preposition in this sentence - 'centre' states the
position of/relation between Birmingham and England.


OED, "centre", "n. and adj", Section II, Sense 11. "The middle point or part, the middle or midst of anything.". Amongst the quotes supporting that sense, "Though they dwelt in the center of Spain, not far from Toledo.".

Chambers, Collins and Cambridge agree.


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