How to Write A Phrase in Bahasa Indonesia – Clear Examples and Explanation

Before we get to learn on how to write a phrase in Bahasa Indonesia, we have to know that Bahasa Indonesia has eight part of speech. They are Indonesian noun ( nomina), Indonesian pronoun (pronomina), Indonesian adjective ( kata sifat), Indonesian verb (kata kerja), Indonesian adverb (adverbia), Indonesian preposition (preposisi), Indonesian conjunction (konjungsi), Indonesian interjection ( kata seruan). Phrase acts collectively as a part of speech.

But sometimes, people are confused at the difference between clause, phrase, and sentence. Clause is a group of words that have subjects and predicates. It is divided into two, independent clause and subordinate clause. Phrase is a group of words that does not have subject nor verb.

Phrase can not be used alone but it is part of the sentence. While sentence is a group of words that has subjects and predicates. Sentence is composed by clause and phrase to add an additional information about what is described.

Now we know the difference between sentence, phrase, and clause. Let’s take a look on how to make phrase in Bahasa Indonesia.

Group of words can be categorized as phrase if:

1. It has two words or more.
2. It has grammatical function.
3. It has at least one grammatical meaning.
4. It is nonpredicative. It does not have a predicate.

In English there are eight common type of phrases. Whereas in Bahasa Indonesia, phrase is based on some categorization. Based on the meaning phrase is divided into two: common phrase and idiomatic phrase. Based on categorization of class words, phrase is divided into five (verb phrase, noun phrase, adjective phrase, prepositional phrase, and abverbial phrase). Another phrase is ambiguity phrase.

In this article, the writer describes how to make phrase in Bahasa Indonesia, especially class of word phrase.

1. Verb phrase
Verb phrase is combination of phrase that is formed of combination of verb with an object or modifier.
For example : Ayah meminum kopi. ( My father drinks coffee.)
Dita akan membeli buku baru. ( Dita will buy a new book.)
Saya sedang menulis surat. ( I am writing a letter.)

2. Noun phrase
Noun phrase is a phrase that head of the word is noun. It includes a person, place, or a thing and modifier. The modifiers can come before or after noun. The modifiers are:
• Article
In english, there are only three articles, while in Bahasa Indonesia there are many articles, such as seekor, sebuah, sepotong, sebiji, sebungkus, seorang, etc.


Noun Noun phrase


Seekor anjing Seekor anjing A dog
Sebuah Jeruk Sebuah jeruk An orange
Seorang Guru Seorang guru A teacher

Now you know how to write a phrase in Bahasa Indonesia. 

  • Possessive noun


+nya Person Noun phrase


Kucing Kucingnya Bu Santi Anjingnya Bu Santi Miss Santi’s dog
Sepatu Sepatunya Aldi Sepatunya Aldi Aldi’s shoes
Ulang tahun Ulang tahunnya Adikku Ulang tahunnya adikku My little sister’s birthday

Now, can you understand how to write a phrase in Bahasa Indonesia?

  • Possessive pronoun


Posessive pronoun Noun phrase


Kertas -ku Kertasku My paper
Pensil -mu Kertasmu Your pencil
Penggaris Kami Penggaris kami Our ruler
  • Adjective


Adjective Noun phrase


Rumah Besar Rumah besar Big house
Kaos Biru Kaos biru Blue T-shirt
Perempuan Cantik Perempuan cantik Beautiful girl
  • Participle


Participle Noun phrase


Ayam Bakar Ayam bakar Grilled chicken
Nasi Goreng Fried rice Nasi goreng

3. Adjective phrase

Adjective phrase is a phrase that head of the word is adjective. It describes a noun or pronoun in a sentence.

Baju adik baru. ( My little brother’s shirt is new.)

Kamarku sangat bersih dan rapi. ( My room is clean and tidy.)

Komputerku rusak. (My computer is broken.)

Dia sangat lelah sepulang bekerja. ( He is exhausted after working.)

Dia cantik memakai baju merah. ( She is pretty in red dress.)

Saya gembira melihat Indonesia di posisi ke empat di ASIAN Games. ( I am so happy to see Indonesian is in fourth position in ASIAN Games)

4. Prepositional phrase

Prepositional phrase is a group of words that contains preposition. It usually consists of a preposition and a noun or a preposition and a pronoun.

Preposition + noun


Di sekolah At school
Ke pantai To the beach
Di dalam kamarku In my room


Preposition + pronoun


Untuk mereka For them
Olehku By me
Kepadanya To her

6. Adverbial Phrase

Adverbial phrase is a phrase that functions as adverb in a sentence. It can appear before or after the subject, or it can be in the beginning or the back of the sentence.

Adverbial phrase



Dengan sabar Ayah mengajarkan adik berhitung dengan sabar. My dad is patiently teaching my little brother to count.
Dengan penyesalan yang mendalam Dengan penyesalan yang mendalam, Dita meninggalkan Arif. With great regret, Dita left Arif.
Dengan senang hati Mereka menerima hadiah itu dengan senang hati. They accept the present happily.