Verbs are words in English language that express the existence of state (love, live, seem) or the doing of an action (play, walk).
We can divide verbs in two groups:
- verbs that are used to express distinctions in time (past, present, future) through tense
- auxiliary verbs which are used with full verbs to give other information about actions and states. For example auxiliary verb be can be used with the present participle of a full verb to say that an action was going on (“in progress”) at a particular (I was swimming); have may be used with the past participle of a full verb to say that an action is completed (I have finished.)
The basic distinction that we can make between verbs is classifying them into groups of stative verbs or dynamic verbs.
Stative verbs are called stative because they are not generally used in progressive forms and they refer to states- experiences or conditions- rather than to actions.
She loves/loved her baby more than anything in the world. (It is a state over which the subject, she in this case, has no control. These verbs cannot be used in progressive forms: *She is loving. ßThis is incorrect.)
Dynamic verbs usually refer to actions which are deliberate or voluntary (I’m making the cake.) or they refer to changing situations ( He’s growing old.)- some activities which have the beginning and the end. They are used in progressive as well as in simple forms.
Progressive forms Simple forms
I’m looking at you. I often look at you.
I’m weighing myself. I weigh 65 kilos.
I’m tasting the soup. The soup tastes salty.
I’m feeling the radiator. It feels hot.
Stative verbs usually occur in the simple form in all tenses. We can think of states in categories like:
-feelings: like, love etc.
-thinking, believing: think, understand etc.
-wants and preferences: prefer, want etc.
-perception and the senses: hear, see etc.
-being/ seeming/ having/ owning: appear, seem, belong, own etc.
Transitive and intransitive verbs
A transitive verb takes a direct object (He is reading a book.) while intransitive verbs do not require an object. (He is walking.) Only transitive verbs may be used in the passive voice because passive sentence takes the object from the regular sentence as its subject ( He returned the book quickly. -The book was returned by him quickly.)
Many verbs can be both transitive and intransitive: for example write intransitive- I’m writing. or transitive- I’m writing a letter.
The following verbs are only transitive and must be followed by an object: have, like, need, owe, remember.
A reflexive verb is the on which requires one of the compounds with –self (reflexive pronouns like: myself, yourself etc.) some verbs may be used with or without the reflexive pronoun object- He washed (himself) and dressed (himself) quickly. Reflexive verbs often have a non-reflexive use also, and can take objects that do not refer back to the subject: She washed the child and then dressed him quickly.
- Verbs tenses
- Present Tenses
- Present Simple Tense
- Present Continous Tense
- Present Perfect Tense
- Present Perfect Continuous Tense
- Past Tenses
- Past Simple Tense
- Past Continuous (Progressive) Tense
- Past Perfect Tense
- Future Tenses
- The Simple Future Tense
- Future Continuous Tense
- Future Perfect Tense
- Future Perfect Continous Tense
- Stative and dynamic verbs
- Transitive and intransitive verbs
- Reflexive verbs
- Full verbs and auxiliary verbs
- Modal verbs
- Indirect speech