Why Verbs Are Important, A Brief English Grammar Synopsis
A verb is a word that come from the Latin word verbum. It is a part of speech that is used to describe motion or convey a subject in action. Examples of verbs include: learn, walk, run, read etc. in most languages a verb can be infected or modified to portray a specific tense, voice or mood. There are also verbs that also have to agree with a certain gender, argument or person. Verbs play a vital role in english grammar and have multitude of assignments.
A verb must have specific tense. Present — indicates that the action is actually being carried out at that moment. Past tense means that the action has already taken place and future tense means that the action will be carried out at a later time (future).
A verb is a very important part of any sentence. There are two main functions that a verb can play: there are those verbs that puts a subject into motion and other verbs offer more clarification on the same subject. Here are some examples:
- My father “smiled” at the well-arranged table.
My father is the stalled subject and smiled is the verb in the sentence.
2. The overworked computer exploded.
The over worked computer is the stalled subject and exploded is the verb and it is in past tense.
The most important thing that you need to note is that every subject must have a verb. If this rule is not followed you will end up with a fragment — a big writing error.
You should always consider the function of a word before you use it as a verb. There are many English words that have more than one function when used in a sentence. You will find out that a word can be a noun, verb or even a modifier. As a result of this, you must pay close attention to how a word is used in a sentence.
A good example is crunch. It is a word that can be used as a verb and as a noun too. Crunch is a doing word that you can do. You can crunch cockroaches under your foot. You can crunch popcorn with your friends. You can also crunch numbers. Also crunch can be a noun — crunch of potatoes is a thing that you can hear, hence a noun.
It is easy to spot a doing word in any sentence. Sing, paint, chew or dance, what do these words show? They are simply showing there is action — action that the subject of the sentence can do. That’s why words like these are called action verbs.
Here is an example John sneezes loudly. Sneezing (sneezes) is something that John can do, hence it is an action verb.
If you find some sentences that you cannot identify the action verb, you take a closer look at the sentence and ask yourself, what is this something that a person (subject) can do? Whatever your answer is, that’s the action verb.
Take an example: during break time, I will call my dad.
There is only one thing that you can do in that sentence, and that is “call”. You cannot do during or dad. In the example sentence you will end up with call as the only action verb in the sentence.
You should also know a linking verb when you see it in a sentence. These are special kinds of verbs that are not used to describe an action, but they are used to connect the subject to other added relevant information.
Here is an example:
Esther “is” my sister.
“Is” is not something that Esther can do, but it is used to connect the subject to added information that is about Esther who is the subject of the sentence. Here are some example of true linking verbs: be (were, am, are being, has been, might have been etc.), seem and become. There is no other way these verbs can be used except as true linking verbs.
There are ways that you can use to identify when the verb is used as an action verb or a linking verb. If you can replace the verb with am, are or is and still get a logical sentence, then you have a linking verb. But if the sentence makes no sense, then you have an action verb. For example: Jack tasted my food — replace tasted with is or are, you will get Jack are my food. This makes no sense meaning that the verb tasted was used as an action verb. The substation method does not work with the word appear, you have to go further and check the verb function in the sentence.
Example: Jane appeared in my doorway.
Appear is something that Jane can do regardless of what you may want.
Jane appeared sad to me. In this sentence the word appear is used as a linking verb. Liking Jane, the subject, to added information of looking sad.
You should also know there are verbs that have more than one part. There are even verbs that have more than four parts. These kind of verbs have the main part and the additional part that is called auxiliary verb.
Here are a few examples:
Fiona “should have gone” to the market before we came home.
Fiona “should have been going” to the market.
Verbs can also be classified using the number of argument they can accommodate. This is called valency. Avalent verb is a verb that has no object or subject. There is no zero valency in English. There are some languages that these can happen like the Mandarin Chinese.
Intransitive verbs have one instance of valency. This simply means that the verb has one subject directly liked to it. For example: “it falls” and “he runs” a transitive verb is one that has two instances of valency. It has a direct object and a subject too. An example: John loves fish. There are those verbs that have 3 instances of valency, they are called ditransitive verbs.
Verbs have been described as doing words for a very long time. The position of a word can help you to know whether it is a verb or not. For example NOUN (verb) — this is a simple sentence structure that can only be completed by adding a suitable verb. There are suffixes and prefixes that sell out verbs — -ate, -en and –ify. All these will show you that the word is a verb.
If you want to appreciate the importance of verbs, ask yourself what can you do without verbs? The answer is simple nothing. Experts claim that verbs are the most important part of speech when it comes to English language. You should know a lot of verbs and there are online lists of countless verbs that could help you slowly learn them.
There is a special king of verbs called the being verbs. They try to show the state of being of the sentence subject. It is hard for some nouns or pronouns to just take up an action, this is where being verbs come in. here are a few examples, you will have been, I will be, we have been, I am and they will be.
There are also irregular verbs. They are verbs that do not follow the general rule(s) when changing tenses. The only way to understand these kind of verbs is to learn them and try and memorize them. Here are some common examples: bite — bit — bitten, hurts — hurt — have hurt, fall — fell — fallen etc.
The voice used in a verb can be used to determine whether the subject is doing the action or the action is being done on the subject. There are two common kind of voices: active and passive voice.
An example of active voice: “I saw Jane”.
Passive voice: “Jane was seen by me”.
Unlike other forms of speech, a verb can change its form. There are verbs that ending can be added — (learn — learned). Some verbs change completely — (teach — taught). When a verb takes another form, it means that the new verb has a different meaning. Different meaning according to tenses or different levels of persons.
One outstanding thing about verbs, is their relationship to time. They have the ability to tell us exactly when the action was taking place. They can tell us if the action already happened (past), is happening now (present) of will happen sometime (future). There are regular and irregular verbs classified according to how they change through the different tenses.
Verbs are very important part of speech. In fact you cannot have a logical sentence that has no verb in it. They are the building blocks that help you come up with sentences that make sense. You can go ahead and try to make sentences that do not have any verbs — you will note that the sentences you compose they are all useless.
A verb goes further to explain the intensity of the feeling that was attached in the process of doing the action. They are the words that help you explain feelings and movements of life. The other part of speech that come close to verbs is adverbs.