Summary of Verbs

What are verbs?

What are verbs?

 A verb is a word (part of speech) that conveys action (bring, read, walk, run, murder), or a state of being (exist, stand).

 Verbs are inflected (modified in form) to encode tenseaspectmood and voice. A verb may also agree with the persongender, and/or number of some of its arguments, such as its subject, or object.

Every sentence has a verb. In English, verbs are the only kind of word that changes to show past or present tense.

 Every sentence must have two parts: a subject and a predicate.

  A subject tells who or what the sentence is about. The subject is a noun or a pronoun. A predicate tells what the subject is or does. The verb is found in the predicate.

   classification of verbs 

 Lexical verbs and Auxiliary verbs  

 English has two main kinds of verbs:

lexical (also called main and full ) verbs

auxiliary verbs

The difference between them is mainly in where they can go in a sentence. Some verbs are in both groups, but there are very few auxiliary verbs in English. 

There are also two kinds of auxiliary verbs:

primary auxiliary verb

modal auxiliary verb

 Regular verb and Irregular verb  

・Regular verb

A regular verb is one that follows the pattern of taking -ed for the past simple and past participle (or -d if the verb ends in -e; smoke smoked).

・Irregular verb

An irregular verb is one that does not take the -ed ending for the Past Simple and Past Participle forms.

 Valency : Transitive verbs and Intransitive verbs  

Lexical verbs are further divided into intransitive and transitive verbs.

transitive verb (requires both a direct subject and one or more objects)

intransitive verbs (do not have objects)

 Dynamic (Action) verbs and Stative (state) verbs 

・Dynamic verb
 (A dynamic verb is a verb which shows continued or progressive action on the part of the subject. )

・Stative verb
 (Stative verbs usually refer to a state or condition which is quite static or unchanging. )

 Finite verbs and Non-finite verb  

・Finite verb

  A finite verb (sometimes called main verbs) is a verb that has a subject, this means that it can be the main verb in a sentence. It shows tense (past / present etc) or number (singular / plural).

・Non-Finite Verbs

 A non-finite verb has no subject, tense or number. The only non-finite verb forms are the infinitive (indicated by to), the gerund or the participle.

 Linking verb (Copula) 

・Linking verb

 A linking verb does not have much meaning in itself. It "links" the subject to what is said about the subject. Usually, a linking verb shows equality or a change to a different state or place.

 Linking verbs are always intransitive (but not all intransitive verbs are linking verbs).

 Phrasal verb  

  A phrasal verb is a combination of a verb and a prepositiona verb and an adverb, or a verb with both an adverb and a preposition, any of which are part of the syntax of the sentence, and so are a complete semantic unit.


A Gerund is a verb when it acts as a noun; gerunds can act as the subject or object of a main verb.

A gerund is a noun formed from a verb by adding -ing. But not all words formed with -ing are gerunds.


Infinitives are often used after other verbs. A modal verb is followed by a bare infinitiveand a lexical verb is followed by to infinitive:


There are two participles in English: the present participle and the past participle. They can both be used as adjectives.

・The present participle is formed by adding -ing to the base form of a verb. 

・The past participle is formed by adding -ed to the base form, unless it is an irregular verb.