What is a verb?

The clock strikes.

Rohan dances.

I feel guilty.

Here, the underlined words, strikes, dances and feels states or asserts something about the person or the thing.

These underlined words are called as verbs. Verbs are the most important part of speech. A sentence is incomplete without a verb acting in it.

Verbs basically originated from the Latin verbum, a word. Verbs are words that depict an action (dance), state of being (arise) or occurrence (grow). Almost every sentence requires a verb.

Let us consider these one at a time to understand it the better way.

Verbs depicting physical actions:

Here are some examples where verbs express physical actions.

She sings to meet her basic needs.

In this example, the word ‘sings’ is a verb which expresses the physical activity to sing.

He wrote the book in the memory of her grandmother.

In this example, the word ‘wrote’ is a verb which expresses the physical activity to write.

Megan bought a movie ticket.

In this example, the word ‘bought’ is a verb which expresses the physical activity to buy.

Verbs expressing mental emotions:

Some of the verbs express mental actions which are stated in the examples below-

She never forgot him.

In this sentence, the word ‘forgot’ expresses the mental activity to forget.

I thought about the dream I had yesterday.

In this sentence, the word ‘thought’ expresses the mental activity to think.

Her guess was always right.

In this sentence, the word ‘guess’ expresses the mental activity to guess.

Verbs portraying state of being:

These verbs are smaller in number but important and they do not express any activity at all. The examples show how the verbs are displaying the state of being which are also known as linking verbs.

Jackal is the most cunning animal of the jungle.

In this sentence, the word ‘is’ is a verb from the verb to be.

It was raining heavily.

In this sentence, the word ‘was’ is a verb from the verb to be.

I am ruined.

In this sentence, the word ‘am’ is a verb from the verb to be.

Different kinds of English verbs:

There are different kinds of verbs apart from action verbs and linking verbs and they are mentioned and described with proper examples below:

Transitive verbs:

The girl kicks the football.

Here, in this sentence, the underlined word ‘kicks’ shows the action denoted by the verb kicks passes over from the doer or subject girl to some object football. The verb, kicks, here is called a transitive verb.

The transitive verb means passing over (in general terms). A transitive verb is a verb that signifies an action which passes over from the doer or subject to an object.

Below are some examples to get a better understanding of the transitive verbs:

Ring the bell, Bella.

(Here, the bell is receiving the action of ring. It is what Bella rings. Therefore, the direct object is Bella.)

I lost my wallet.

(Here, the wallet is receiving the action of lost. It is what I lost. Therefore, the direct object is the wallet.)

Crickets make noise.

(Here, noise is receiving the action of make. It is what Crickets makes. Therefore, the direct object is noise.)

Dogs eat bones.

(Here, bones is receiving the action of eat. It is what dog eats. Therefore, the direct object is bones.)

I saw the car.

(Here, the car is receiving the action of saw. It is what I saw. Therefore, the direct object is the car.)

Sia ate the ice-cream.

(Here, ice-cream is receiving the action of ate. It is what Sia ate. Therefore, the direct object is ice-cream.) Check this module to learn Grammar.

Intransitive verbs:

The girl laughs hysterically.

Here, in this sentence, the underlined word ‘laughs’ shows the action which is denoted by the verb laughs stops with the doer or the subject girl and does not pass over to the object. The verb laughs, therefore is called as an Intransitive verb.

The intransitive verb means not passing over (in general terms). An intransitive verb is a verb which signifies an action which does not pass over to an object, or which expresses a state or being.

Below are some quick examples to get you through with the intransitive verbs.

He was wandering in his mind.

(Here, he was wandering, states no action on anything. In this example, the verb ‘wandering’ is an intransitive verb.)

The lion sleeps.

(Here, the lion sleeps, states no action on anything. In this example, the verb ‘sleeps’ is an intransitive verb.)

There is a flaw in your dress.

(Here, is a flaw, states no action on anything. In this example, the verb ‘is’ is an intransitive verb.)

The bus stopped at its position.

(Here, the bus stopped, states no action on anything. In this example, the verb ‘stopped’ is an intransitive verb.)

The sun is shining brightly.

(Here, the sun shining, states no action on anything. In this example, the verb ‘shining’ is an intransitive verb.)

He spoke softly.

(Here, he spoke, states no action on anything. In this example, the verb ‘spoke’ is an intransitive verb.)

 Different forms of verbs:

A verb which may refer to different time slots is termed in different forms of verbs. There are three forms of verbs, they are mainly:

  • Present

A verb which refers to the present time is said to be in the Present tense, and the actions going on in the present moment falls under this category.

For instance:

I sing.

He cries.

It moves.

Pratik laughs.

We love.

  • Past

A verb that refers to the gone time or the past time is said to be in the Past tense.

For instance:

I sang.

He cried.

It moved.

Pratik laughed.

We loved.

  • Future

A verb that refers to something which is going to happen or the future time is said to be in the future tense.

For instance:

I shall sing.

He will cry.

It will move.

Pratik will laugh.

We shall love.

The Tense of a Verb shows the time of an action or an event i.e. Present, Past, and Future.

Verbs are easy to interpret and learn. But, without proper practice, all learning goes in vain. A proper guidance in learning Grammar can be found on various platforms whether online or offline. The only thing lacking in those materials would be authenticity and updated knowledge-base.

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