The word "hey" is popular as an alternative to the word "hi," or it’s used when expressing surprise or sudden awareness. "Hey" is an interjection. (See note below.)
The word "hey" is also used when expressing surprise:
You can also use "hey" when attempting to get someone’s attention:
Hey! Don’t step on me!
Note: The word "hey" is an example of an interjection, which is one of the eight parts of speech. Other examples of interjections are words like yeah, oh, ow, uhm, duh, oops, and whoa.
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May 11, 2016