English Grammar Guide for ESL

VERBS (e.g.: be, take, want, have, go)

In this section: Description, Exercises


An Overview of Verbs

Verbs are used to describe actions, e.g.: I eat or to establish relationships, e.g.: She is my friend. To write verbs correctly, you need to be able to identify and produce the different forms a verb can take.

The base form of the verb is called the infinitive. This is the form listed in the dictionary and it is the starting point for using a verb in a sentence. Mastering English verbs involves learning infinitives (since they supply the basic meaning) and knowing the different forms a verb takes depending on categories such as tense (e.g.: present, past, etc.) and subject (e.g.: je, tu, etc.). Providing this information allows the infinitive to "come to life" in a sentence.

Our overview of verbs also provides a discussion of negation, imperatives past participles, present participles and interrogation.

Be sure to use the infinitive after prepositions and verbs other than be and have. For example, I want to leave, she would help.

In this section: Description, Exercises

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