Verbs Verbs express action occurrence state of being
Verbs tell what action a subject is performing • Can show physical action (marched, mailed) • Can show mental action or ownership (thought, has) • Can show an occurrence (became) • Can show a state of being (was)
Number of verbs • Verbs have number, which means they are singular (one) or plural (more than one). • The number of a verb depends on the number of its subject.
Singular verbs In 1963, the Berlin Wall stood as a new symbol of communism’s strength. Today it stands in pieces as a new symbol of communism’s weakness. • Notice that stands, with an “s” is singular.
Plural verbs In 1963, two 10-year-old girls were pushed apart by the wall. Today, the 37-year-old women stand together on top of it. • Notice that stand, without an “s” is plural.
Person of a verb • Verbs differ in form depending upon the point of view or person of the pronoun being used with them. • First person (I) • Second person (you) • Third person (he, she, it)
Point of view • First Person singular • I sniff … • First Person plural • We sniff … Notice on packet page 65 the examples of second and third person.
Voice of a verb • The voice tells you whether the subject is doing the action or is receiving the action.
Active voice of a verb • The verb is in the active voice if the subject is doing the action in the sentence. The baseball hit the batter.
Passive voice of a verb • The verb is in the passive voice if the subject is receiving the action or not personally doing the action. The batter was hit by the baseball.
Tense of a verb • A verb has three principal parts: • The present • The past • The past participle The past and past participle of regular verbs are formed by adding –ed to the present form.
Present tense of a verb • When the verb expresses action or existence which is happening now or happens continually or regularly. My stomach tightens into a knot sometimes. My breaths are shorter, and my palms sweat.
Past tense of a verb • When a verb expresses action or existence which is completed at a particular time in the past. Yesterday, my stomach tightened into a knot, and my palms perspired before the game.
Future tense of a verb • When a verb expresses action that will take place. Anxiety will visit you too some day, and he will be tough! But you will be tougher!
Present perfect tense of a verb • When a verb expresses action which began in the past but continues or is completed in the present. She has screamed at her friends many times and they have ignored it.
Past perfect tense of a verb • When a verb expresses action which began in the past and was completed in the past. Then, last Friday at the Pizza Hut, they had eaten more than their share of the pizza, and she had called them “greedy pigs.”
Future perfect tense of a verb • When a verb expresses action which will begin in the future and will be completed by a specific time in the future. By next Friday, she will have forgotten the pizza, but they will have remembered the name-calling.
Helping and auxiliary verbs • These verbs help to form some of the tenses and voice of the main verb. Elmer was using super-strength, slow-drying glue. For 10 minutes he had been holding the two broken parts together. He should have bought a C-clamp for a glue job like this.
Common helping verbs shall will could would did should must can may have had has do And the forms of the verb be is are was were am been
Transitive verbs • Verbs transfer their action to an object. An object must receive the action of a transitive verb for the meaning of the verb to be complete.
Look at this sentence The earthquake shook San Francisco with a fury. Shook transfers its action to San Francisco. Without the word San Francisco the meaning of the verb shook is incomplete.
Look at this sentence San Francisco was shaken by the earthquake. The subject of the sentence, San Francisco, receives the action of the verb, was shaken. The direct object is San Francisco; the indirect object is earthquake.
Intransitive verbs • Intransitive verbs complete the action without an object. I apologized for my late assignment.
Special verbs • Many verbs can be either transitive or intransitive.
Linking verbs • Links a subject to a noun or adjective in the predicate. Because it does not express an action, a linking verb is intransitive. • See your packet page 68 for examples of common linking verbs.
Verbals • A word which is made from a verb, has the power of a verb, but acts as another part of speech. • Verbals can be gerunds, participles and infinitives.
Gerund • A gerund is a verb form that ends in –ing and is used as a noun. Smoking rots your lungs. The noun smoking is the subject You should quit smoking. The noun smoking is the direct object.
Participle • A participle is a verb form ending in –ing or –ed and it functions as an adjective. Those kids digging for China are already tired. Those tired kids will probably lose interest before they make it. Digging and tired modify kids.
Infinitive • A verb form introduced by to; it may be used as a noun, adjective or adverb. To scream in class was her secret wish. The noun to scream is the subject. But the last student to scream was sent away. To scream is an adjective modifying student.
Overwhelmed? • Verbs are tricky and you do not need to worry about knowing all forms for this class. • Spend your efforts writing clearly and staying true to the verb tense that is most appropriate for your writing assignment.