What part of speech is “was”

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was is a collective noun that is used to refer to the collective mass of certain types of things. It is often used to refer to a homogeneous provision of collective items.

rules and use cases associated with 'was' include the Howarth Rule, which states that 'was' is to be used when referring to individual items undergoing a collective action but as a single entity.

1. The was of timber was immense.

2. His was of dreams inspired us all.

3. The was of food she had prepared was quite impressive.

It's important to remember that 'was' can only be used when referring to collective items as a single entity, and cannot be used when referring to individual items within a collective group.


was is a past tense third-person singular verb of 'be'. It is used to express a completed action in the past. It can take on any person as the grammatical subject, depending on the context.

rules associated with 'was' include the conjugation of regular verbs in the past tense; for example, 'walk' becomes 'walked' and 'do' becomes 'did'. When using 'was', emphasis is generally placed on the action itself, rather than the subject.

1. She was singing a lullaby.

2. Hokusai was a renowned Japanese artist.

3. They were eating dinner in front of the TV last night.

for terms that express a connection or transition from one condition or situation to another, 'was' can take on the form of 'were' or 'had been' depending on the context.

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