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Section 11.3.6

Nonfinite Verbs

Verbs that do not have tense or agreement endingsare nonfinite (also called verbals).

Nonfinite verbs can be classified as consisting of five types: base forms, presentparticiples, past participles, infinitives, and gerunds. (Some grammarians combine the categories of base form and infinitive.)


We watched the substance explode. [base form]

The growing yeast culture has special storagerequirements. [present participle]

The gas chromatograph fixed last week isbroken again. [pastparticiple]

When NASA first organized the Viking Lander missions to Mars, one of themost vexing problems its scientists faced was devising and agreeing upon teststo detect life. [infinitive]

--Kai Wu, "Artificial Life," SciTech Magazine

Nicolas Andry, the pioneer of orthopedics, had a special interest incorrecting deformities inchildren. . . .  [gerund]

--Linglei Xu, "Bone Talk," SciTech Magazine


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