The approach to language and grammar that motivates this book is unabashedly functional; grammar is not just a system of empty rules, it is a means to an end, an instrument for constructing concise coherent communication. In grammar as in music, good expression rides on good form. Figuratively and literally, grammar like musical form must make sense. But for the instrument to serve its purpose, it must first exist; the rules must be real, they can be explicitly described and taught. This book is intended for both students and teachers, at college level, for both native and nonnative speakers. With the guidance of a teacher this book will serve as a thorough introduction to the grammar of English. Volume I begins with words and their meanings, then on to propositions and simple state or event clauses - participant roles, verb types, transitivity, subjects and objects. It then covers the grammatical sub systems commonly found in simple clauses: Verbal inflections, auxiliaries and the grammar of tense-aspect modality and negation; articles determiners, pronouns and the grammar of referential coherence; the variety of noun phrases and noun modifiers.