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Here's How to Identify the 'Complete Subject' in a Sentence

Read on to identify a complete subject.
Omkar Phatak Mar 17, 2019
When learning any language like English, you will have to understand several grammatical intricacies involved in its usage. The first step in learning English language or any other, is knowing the 'Words' and the second part is to learn how to put them together to form meaningful 'Sentences'.
A sentence is made up of several components, which primarily includes the 'subject' and the 'predicate'. The predicate consists of an 'action word' or verb, an object, and more associated words.
The subject of any sentence can be defined to be the 'doer' of whatever action is being described in that sentence, or who is being described in the sentence.

What is Complete Subject?

It is the noun which acts as the subject of any sentence, along with all the adjectives which describe it in detail. A subject is a string of words, which includes the actual subject, along with words describing it.
On the other hand, the complete predicate is made up of the verb, the object on which it acts, along with any added clauses. A complete subject is called so, as it provides a comprehensive and exact description of the subject of a sentence.

Difference Between Complete and Simple Subject

If you take away all the adjectives or descriptive words from the complete subject, what remains is the 'Simple Subject'. Stripped of all its descriptive epithets, it's transformed into a simple subject.

How to Identify it?

The best way to find the subject of the sentence is to first locate the verb. Then ask questions to the verb like 'What' or 'Who', to know who is the doer of the action, described by the verb.
Once you find the simple subject in this fashion, the complete subject will also be revealed to you. It is just the simple subject, along with all its descriptors.


There is no better way to learn rules of English grammar, than solving exercises, whereby you can learn how to identify things like the 8 parts of speech and differentiate the subject from its predicate. Here are some examples where the complete subject is identified in italics.
  • The big bad wolf pounced over its prey.
  • The placid lake suddenly rippled.
  • The intelligent investor doesn't rely on speculation.
  • Massive stones dropped down to block the highway.
  • Energetic electrons emit photons to lose energy.
  • Absolute self belief is the key to success.
  • Pure intuition sometimes leads to great discoveries.
  • Insurmountable odds are a myth.
A complete subject is the full-scale identification of the subject, along with all of its epithets. The best way to understand this grammar concept in greater detail is to work out an exercise of identifying it in sentences which you find in various texts and books while reading.