21 Dec 2021 Admin User 0 Spoken English


Writing from a word to a sentence in English unveils the important aspects of this language. Furthermore, a powerful grip over the English language will make you more confident while having verbal as well as written communication. So, always endeavor to enhance your knowledge as well as comprehension. In this context, let’s have a stimulating discussion on what is a verb?

What is a Verb in English Grammar?

A verb is a word that shows an action (dynamic) or state (situation). Or, a verb reflects the state of a being (being verb) or activity (action verb) to describe the outlook of a certain situation. 

As per Merriam-Webster, the definition of a verb 

“A verb is a word (such as jump, think, happen, or exist) that is usually one of the main parts of a sentence and that expresses an action, an occurrence, or a state of being.”

Like nouns, pronouns, verbs play a crucial role in sentence making. For more insights, move on to the verb examples list.

Sita eats pizza for dinner.

Here, eat is an action verb that shows an activity of Sita when she is having her dinner.

She likes her family.

She likes to have a cup of coffee with her friends

Here, like is a verb, showing the state of her mind without doing any action though.

In some cases, some verbs can act as either an action verb or a being verb. At this time, you need to contemplate if the subject is performing the action of the verb or state of being.

For examples:

This salad tastes delicious.

John tastes the wine.

In the first example, salad (subject) is not doing any activity. It tells the state of the salad. Whereas, the second example reflects the activity performed by John(subject).

Note: Don’t use a continuous form (-ing) with a stative verb. 

Now, the above-mentioned examples will help you to comprehend the definition of a verb with examples and verb sentences. Before moving to its types, grab some examples of verb words:

  • Arise

  • Awake

  • Be 

  • Choose 

  • Do

  • Get

  • Grind

  • Hold

  • Know

  • Rise

How Many Types of Verbs With Examples?

While categorizing the verb, we find some known forms of the verb. In this section, you will know how many types of verbs are with examples.

Main Verb Vs. Helping (Auxiliary) Verb

Main Verb:

The use of a verb in a sentence tells you its type. If a verb expresses the action, it is called the main verb. Whereas, if the verb is supporting the main verb, then it is called helping or auxiliary verb.

For example, 

Alice is going to India 

Here “go, tells the action of Alice which is the main verb whereas “is” reflects the tense of the verb so it counts as a helping verb.

Types of Main Verbs

Finite verb:

Verb that is limited by person and number is called a finite verb. Or, a finite verb depends on the subject. 

For examples,

  • She is playing.

  • They are singing a song.

Here the subjects “she” and “they” decide whether you should use “is” or “are.” Hence here “is and are” are finite verbs.

Non-finite verb:

When a verb is not limited by number and person or doesn’t depend on the subject, then it is a non-finite verb. 

For examples,

  • Alice likes watching web series.

  • He wants to go abroad. 

Here “watching” and “to go” will not change even if you change the subject of the sentence. It means these verbs are not limited by number or person.

Transitive verb:

A transitive verb requires an object to complete a sentence. 

For examples,

  • I write essays.

  • Children fly kites.

Intransitive verb:

When a verb doesn’t require an object to complete a sentence, then it is known as an intransitive verb.

For examples,

  • The ship sank.

  • Birds fly. 

Helping Verb (Auxiliary Verb)

Helping or auxiliary verbs help the main verb of the sentence by explaining its meaning. It also helps when you need to show the verb’s tense to form a question or express a negative situation. There are two types of auxiliary verbs: Primary and modals.

Types of Helping Verb

Primary Auxiliary Verb:

When it comes to using primary auxiliary verbs, you should note down their important properties. You change them to match the subject of the sentence and they can also stand as independent verbs. 3 types of auxiliary: have, do, and be.

Have: You can create the present form of verbs by joining “have” with participles. Also, combining “have” with modal verbs will help in expressing possibility.

For examples,

  • We have a vehicle.

  • We have visited the US four times.

Do: When you have to express the negative, ask questions, or need to emphasize something, you should use “do” as a helping verb.

For examples, 

  • I don’t play golf every weekend.

  • Do you know how to play the harmonium?

Be: This verb is used to create progressive verbs by combining them with particles.

The eight different forms: be, am, is, are, was, being, been.

For examples,

  • The Prime Minister is to visit the US in January.

  • I am late.


Modals help to express mood in a sentence. In grammar, modals reflect the attitude of the speaker in order to convey the feeling he wants to convey.

Modals: Shall, Will, Could, Would, May, Might, Can, Could, Must, Ought to, Need, Used to.

For examples,

  • Rita could learn to fly helicopters.

  • Tanya will attend the seminar tomorrow.

What Are Verb Forms?

Verb forms are directly connected to verb tenses. The verb tenses indicate the time of an action or being of the verb occurred. Understand the verb forms, let’s check the table for more clarity.

PAST tenses Simple past Past I played checkers. Past Progressive Past tense “to be” + present participle I was playing checkers. Past Perfect “Had” + past participle I had played checkers. Past Perfect Progressive “Had Been” + present participle I had been playing checkers.
PRESENT tenses Simple present Present I play checkers Present Progressive Present tense “to be” + present participle I am playing checkers. Present Perfect Present “to have” + past participle I have played checkers. Present Perfect Progressive Present tense “to have” + “been” + present participle I have been playing checkers
FUTURE tenses Simple future “Will” + present OR present tense “to be” + “going to” + verb I will play checkers. I am going to play checkers. Future Progressive “will be” + present participle OR present tense “to be” + “going to be” + present participle I will be playing checkers. I am going to be playing checkers Future Perfect “will have” + past participle OR present tense “to be” + “going to have” + past participle I will have played checkers. I am going to have played checkers. Future Perfect Progressive “will have been” + present participle OR present “to be” + “going to have been” + preset participle I will have been playing checkers. I am going to have been playing checkers.


How Do You Define Verbals In Grammar?

When verbs act as nouns, adjectives, or adverbs in a sentence, it is known as the verbals. Three types of verbals:

Infinitive or Verb - Noun:

It acts as a noun and a verb and is denoted by “to + V1 (the first form of a verb).

For examples,

  • I want to study English. 

  • Alice has nothing to stop the baby’s screams.


They act as a noun and a verb and are denoted by “V1+ing.”

For examples,

  • Swimming is a good exercise.

  • I like watching television.


When a word can be used as a verb as well as an adjective, it is called a participle. It comes in two tenses: present and past. 

For examples,

  • He went to bed after thinking all is well.

  • Driven by poverty, he committed suicide.

What Are Phrasal Verbs?

Phrasal verbs signify a totally different form of a verb. It shows the combination of two or three words of different grammar classes: particle or preposition. In other words, phrasal verbs reflect the combination of the main verb with a particle or a main verb with a preposition.

If a phrasal verb includes a preposition, then it is called a prepositional verb; and if a particle is used, then it is known as a particle verb. Other terms used for phrasal verbs are compound verb, verb-particle construction, verb-adverb combination, or multi-word verb.

For examples,

They picked on nobody

Here, “on” is a prepositional verb used with another verb pick.

I ran into an old friend.

Who is looking after the babies?

Important Rules Related to Verbs

  •  Don’t use transitive verbs without an object.

For example,

I wrote and took a rest for the whole day.

Incorrect: Write is a transitive verb and you need to use an object. 

Correct: I wrote my homework and took a rest for the whole day.

  • Make sure to use the infinitive form when you use a verb as a noun, “ing (gerund) form.
  • A verb either does not take any preposition or takes a fixed proposition.

For example,

Incorrect: I prefer tea to coffee.

Correct: I prefer tea to coffee.

  •  Adverb of manners explains how a verb is done and generally ends in “ly.”

For example,

He works honestly.

  • Instead of was, use "were" for imaginary posts.

For example, 

Incorrect: If I was a millionaire, I would help the millennium project.

Correct: If I were a millionaire, I would help the millennium project.

  • If you need to use two forms of a verb in a sentence, you must use both of the forms.

Incorrect: I have never and will never cheat you.

Correct: I have never cheated and will never cheat you.

Read More - Learn What Is an Adverb

Final Thoughts:

Verbs play an imperative role in English grammar. Go through the write-up to dig out more information on what is a verb in English grammar. Leave a comment if you have any concerns or are eager to know more about verb words.



BY: Admin User

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