What Are Noun Phrases?
A noun phrase is a phrase that plays the role of a noun. The head word in a noun phrase will be a noun or a pronoun. In the examples below, the whole noun phrase is underlined and the head word is in bold.
I like sitting in the garden.
I know the back street.
I’ve met the last remaining chief.
Compare the three examples above to these:
I like it.
I know them.
I've met him.
In the above three examples, the words in bold are all pronouns. The ability to replace the noun phrases in the first three examples with a pronoun proves that the underlined texts are functioning as nouns, making them noun phrases.
Note: Like any noun, a noun phrase can be a subject, an object, or a complement.