what is the place of this word "copper" in the following sentence?

The ideal choice, when isotopic composition is used to investigate the source of copper ore, would seem to be copper itself.

verb or noun? Copper word in the Oxford Dictionary is a verb and noun.

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  • 2
    Do you think it's a verb? Why? Do you think it's a noun? Why? Show some research and/or reasoning, please. Commented Aug 26, 2015 at 7:49
  • Copper word in the Oxford Dictionary the verb and noun.
    – perspolis
    Commented Aug 26, 2015 at 7:55
  • 1
    @perspolis - Details like that are very important to include in the question. Without knowing why you are confused, it's hard for the community to help clear up that confusion. And it's always good to let everyone know you're doing some research on your own (notice how, if you hover over the downvote button, it says: This question does not show any research effort). Finally – this is not a criticism, just something that might help you out in the future – instead of "place of this word," I think you might want to say "part of speech". Welcome aboard.
    – J.R.
    Commented Aug 26, 2015 at 8:10
  • So, what is confusing to you about those definitions? Does neither of them seem to fit? (by the way, edit your question to include the relevant definitions, as well as a link to Oxford dictionary). Commented Aug 26, 2015 at 8:54
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    @J.R. I think it is noun. However, I don't know why "would" has been used ? "The Ideal choice seems to be copper itself ".
    – Cardinal
    Commented Aug 26, 2015 at 8:55

1 Answer 1


"would seem to be" functions like "is".

So the sentence boils down to

  • ...choice. . . is copper.

(note that it does not say "to copper", nor "coppered", nor "coppering") So if it's a verb, it is neither an infinitive, nor a participle, nor a gerund.

And in the (skeletal) structure above, "copper" can only be a predicate nominative or a predicate adjective.

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