Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

  

English definition of “exclamation”

exclamation

noun [C]     /ˌek.skləˈmeɪ.ʃən/
something you say or shout suddenly because of surprise , fear , pleasure , etc.: an exclamation of delight Shouting and screaming Grammar:Clause typesThere are four basic types of main clause: declaratives (statements), interrogatives (questions), imperatives (orders/instructions) and exclamatives (used for exclamations).Grammar:Declarative clausesDeclarative clauses most commonly function as statements. The usual word order is subject (s) + verb (v) + x. Declaratives can be affirmative or negative. They make statements about how things are and how they are not.Grammar:Interrogative clausesInterrogative clauses most commonly function as questions. The usual word order is (wh-word) + auxiliary/modal verb (aux/m) + subject + verb + x:Grammar:Imperative clausesImperative clauses most commonly function as commands, instructions or orders. The usual word order is verb + x. We do not usually include the subject in an imperative clause. We use the base form of the verb:Grammar:Exclamative clausesExclamative clauses usually have one of the following word orders:Grammar:ExclamationsWe use exclamations to express surprise or shock or a strong emotion about something. The type of phrase or clause associated with exclamations is called exclamative.Grammar:What …!We can use what + noun phrase ((+ verb) (+ tag)):Grammar:How …!We often use how followed by an adjective only:Grammar:Exclamatives with interrogative formWe sometimes make an exclamation using interrogative (question) word order:
(Definition of exclamation noun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of exclamation

Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Shouting & screaming, but you might be interested in these topics from the Expressing opposition & disapproval topic area:

Definitions of “exclamation” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

familiarity

a good knowledge of something, or the fact that you know it so well

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More