Difference between Verb and Noun

Key difference: A verb is a word that is used to describe an action in a sentence. A noun is a word which names a person, place, thing, event, etc.

Verbs and nouns both are parts of speech in English grammar. Both words are crucial for essaying and lending contextual meaning to a particular piece of text.

A verb, simply put, is an action word. It stands for any action, happening, or an occurrence in a phrase, clause or sentence. It is often the most important part in a predicate. A predicate is a part of a sentence or a clause that contains a verb and some extra information about the subject. 

For example:

John plays football.

The predicate in the above sentence is "plays football", whereas the verb used is plays (from to play), which aptly describes the action performed by John. Verbs help in understanding the action in a sentence, in relation to the subject and the object. Some commonly used verbs are:

  • Mary is sleeping.
  • Harry ate the apple.
  • She threw the paper out.
  • Mom is cooking for us.
  • David jumped into the pool.

Other than the above, verbs are also used to describe:

  • A physical action (e.g., to swimto writeto climb).
  • A mental action (e.g., to thinkto guessto consider).
  • A state of being (e.g., to beto existto appear).

Nouns are another major part of speech, as far as English grammar is concerned. Nouns help in identifying objects, places, persons, etc. by their names. It would be very hard, even in imagination, to remember things or persons without using their names.

For example:

Suzy is clever. She scores well in exams

In the above sentence, one can understand that Suzy is a clever person. However, if we eliminate the noun Suzy from this sentence, the meaning becomes obscured and we won’t be able to know who is being mentioned as being clever in the sentence. Similarly, if the noun 'exams' were not used, the sentence wold not make much sense. This is why nouns are so indispensable to our speech and text.

There are two main types of nouns: Common Nouns and Proper Nouns. The actual names of people, places or things are considered to be Proper Nouns. Proper nouns are unique to the thing. Whereas, common nouns are the general names used for a class of person, place or thing. These are the common names used to refer to something. For example: Suzy  would be a proper noun, as it is her name; it is unique to her. Whereas, exams are a common noun as they are a general name; the name is not unique as there are many types and forms of exams.

Some other examples of using a noun are:

  • Cindy is leaving for Utah.
  • Robert went to a party last night.
  • James watched a movie.
  • The food was delicious.
  • Kate bought us a cake.

Comparison between Verb and Noun:





A verb is a word that is used to describe an action in a sentence.

A noun is a word which names a person, place, thing, event, etc.


Linking verbs, intransitive verbs, transitive verbs, etc.

Proper nouns, countable nouns, collective nouns, etc.

Example of usage

Mary is sleeping.

Mary is sleeping.

Image Courtesy: derekhaines.ch, nccomedyarts.com

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