English Verbs

English Verbs is a word or set of words that shows action (runs, is going, has been painting); feeling (loves, envies); or state of being (am, are, is, have been, was, seem).

  • I ran around the block.
  • I like my friend.
  • He seems friendly

English Verbs

English verbs are either regular or irregular. A regular verb’s simple past tense and past participle are always identical. Not so with irregular verbs. They form the simple past tense and the past participle in any number of unpredictable ways.

Depending on the topics, the time they refer to, and other ideas we want to express, they take on a variety of forms.

State-of-being verbs are called linking verbs. They include all forms of the verb to be (be, being, been, am, is, are, was, were), plus such words as look, feel, appear, act, go, followed by an adjective.

Here are some examples:

  • You look happy.
  • We feel fine.
  • He went ballistic.

Verbs often consist of more than one word. For instance, had been breaking down is a four-word verb. It has a two-word main verb, breaking down (also called a phrasal verb), and two helping verbs (had and been). Helping verbs are so named because they help clarify the intended meaning.

Many verbs can function as helping verbs, including is, shall, must, do, has, can, keep, get, start, help, etc.

You will sometimes hear the word participle, which is the form of a verb used with helping verbs to make verb tenses or is used to form adjectives. For instance, breaking and broken are the present and past participles, respectively, of the verb break. A broken dish is an example of a phrase containing a participle as an adjective.

Verbs often take direct objects, which receive the action of the verb carried out by the subject.

Here are some examples:

  • I like cake.
    (cake receives the action, like, done by the subject, I)
  • She lifts weights.
    (weights receives the action, lifts, done by the subject, She)

Verbs whose direct objects are the same as their subject are called Reflexive verbs.

Here are some examples:

  • John taught himself to play the guitar.
    (Reflexive verb: taught  and The direct object and the subject= himself)

Verbs may also take indirect objects, which receive the direct object. You can spot an indirect object if it makes sense to place to or from in front of it.

Here are some examples:

  • I gave Joe the cake.
    (The indirect object, Joe, receives the direct object, cake, given by the subject, I. Note that you could also say I gave the cake to Joe.)
  • She did me a favor.
    (The indirect object, me, is affected by the direct object, favor, done by the subject, She. Note that you could also say She did a favor for me.)

Gerund is another verb-related term we’ll mention only briefly. Gerunds are also called verbal nouns, because they are formed when verbs have -ing added to them and are used as nouns.

Example:

Walking is great exercise. (The –ing word, the gerund, is the subject of the sentence.)

The Most Common English Verbs

Here is a list of all common English verbs with their patterns. You should know these verbs to improve your English Language skills.

Present SimplePast SimplePast Participle
addaddedadded
agreeagreedagreed
allowallowedallowed
answeransweredanswered
appearappearedappeared
askaskedasked
be  (am / is / are)was / werebeen
beatbeatbeaten
becomebecamebecome
beginbeganbegun
beleavebeleavedbeleaved
bendbentbent
betbetbet
bitebitbitten
blowblewblown
borrowborrowedborrowed
breakbrokebroken
bringbroughtbrought
broadcastbroadcast /

broadcasted

broadcast /

broadcasted

buildbuiltbuilt
burnburnt / burnedburnt / burned
buyboughtbought
callcalledcalled
carrycarriedcarried
catchcaughtcaught
changechangedchanged
choosechosechosen
closeclosedclosed
comecamecome
considerconsideredconsidered
continuecontinuedcontinued
costcosted / costcosted / cost
createcreatedcreated
cutcutcut
decidedecideddecided
diedieddied
digdugdug
dodiddone
drawdrewdrawn
dreamdreamt /

dreamed

dreamt /

dreamed

drinkdrankdrunk
drivedrovedriven
eatateeaten
expectexpectedexpected
explainexplainedexplained
fallfellfallen
feelfeltfelt
fightfoughtfought
fillfilledfilled
findfoundfound
flyflewflown
followfollowedfollowed
forgetforgotforgotten
forgiveforgaveforgiven
freezefrozefrozen
getgotgotten / got
givegavegiven
gowentgone
growgrewgrown
happenhappenedhappened
havehadhad
hearheardheard
helphelpedhelped
hidehidhidden
hithithit
holdheldheld
hurthurthurt
includeincludedincluded
keepkeptkept
killkilledkilled
knowknewknown
laylaidlaid
leadledled
learnlearnt / learnedlearnt / learned
leaveleftleft
lendlentlent
letletlet
lielay / iedlain / lied
likelikedliked
listenlistenedlistened
livelivedlived
looklookedlooked
loselostlost
lovelovedloved
makemademade
meanmeantmeant
meetmetmet
movemovedmoved
needneededneeded
offerofferedoffered
openopenedopened
paypaidpaid
playplayedplayed
promisepromisedpromised
provideprovidedprovided
putputput
reachreachedreached
readreadread
remainremainedremained
rememberrememberedremembered
rideroderidden
ringrangrung
riseroserisen
runranrun
saysaidsaid
seesawseen
seemseemedseemed
sellsoldsold
sendsentsent
serveservedserved
setsetset
showshowedshown
shutshutshut
singsangsung
sitsatsat
sleepsleptslept
speakspokespoken
spendspentspent
startstartedstarted
staystayedstayed
stopstoppedstopped
studystudiedstudied
swimswamswum
taketooktaken
talktalkedtalked
teachtaughttaught
teartoretorn
telltoldtold
thinkthoughtthought
throwthrewthrown
traveltraveledtraveled
trytriedtried
turnturnedturned
understandunderstoodunderstood
useusedused
waitwaitedwaited
wakewokewoken
walkwalkedwalked
wantwantedwanted
watchwatchedwatched
wearworeworn
winwonwon
workworkedworked
worryworriedworried
writewrotewritten
rideroderidden
ringrangrung
riseroserisen
riverivedriven/rived
runranrun
sawsawedsawn/sawed
saysaidsaid
seesawseen
seeksoughtsought
sellsoldsold
sendsentsent
setsetset
sewsewedsewn / sewed
shakeshookshaken
shaveshavedshaved / shaven
shearshore / shearedshorn/sheared
shedshedshed
shineshoneshone
shoeshodshod
shootshotshot
showshowedshown
shrinkshrankshrunk
shutshutshut
singsangsung
sinksanksunk
sitsatsat
sleepsleptslept
slideslidslid / slidden
slingslungslung
slinkslunkslunk
slitslitslit
sneaksneaked/snucksneaked/snuck
sowsowedsown
speakspokespoken
speedsped/speededsped/speeded
spellspelledspelled
spellspelt/spelledspelt/spelled
spendspentspent
spillspilt/spilledspilt/spilled
spinspan / spunspun
spitspat/spitspat/spit
splitsplitsplit
spoilspoilt/spoiledspoilt/spoiled
spreadspreadspread
springsprangsprung
standstoodstood
stealstolestolen
stickstuckstuck
stingstungstung
stinkstank / stunkstunk
stridestrodestridden
stringstrungstrung
stripstrippedstripped
strivestrovestriven
subletsubletsublet
sunburnsunburned / sunburntsunburned/sunburnt
swearsworesworn
sweatsweat / sweatedsweat / sweated
sweepsweptswept
swellswelledswollen/swelled
swimswamswum
swingswungswung
taketooktaken
teachtaughttaught
teartoretorn
telltoldtold
thinkthoughtthought
thrivethrove / thrivedthriven / thrived
throwthrewthrown
thrustthrustthrust
treadtrodtrodden
undergounderwentundergone
understandunderstoodunderstood
undertakeundertookundertaken
unwindunwoundunwound
upsetupsetupset
vexvext / vexedvext / vexed
wakewokewoken
wearworeworn
weavewovewoven
wedwed / weddedwed / wedded
weepweptwept
wetwet / wettedwet / wetted
winwonwon
windwoundwound
withdrawwithdrewwithdrawn
withholdwithheldwithheld
withstandwithstoodwithstood
wringwrungwrung
writewrotewritten

By Superingenious

I help students who are preparing for their international test or the once are looking to improve their English skills. So I help students learn English, get better scores on their tests, and prepare for the future.

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