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Section 11.3

Verbs

Verbs describe actions--what has happened, what is happening, or what will ormight happen--or a condition.

Verbs can be divided into two categories, transitive andintransitive. A transitive verb takes an object;an intransitive verb does not.

Verbs must always agree with their subjects.

Sometimes with the addition of auxiliary verbs, verbs express

  • tense (past, present or future), the time when an action happened (or will happen)
  • ; in all tenses, verbs can have a progressive form.

  • mood (indicative, imperative, or subjunctive), the attitude of the speaker towards the action or the certainty with which the action takes (or took) place.
  • voice (active or passive), whether the subject is the doer or receiver of the action expressed by the verb.

Each of these categories is expressed with a particular verb form (base form, present participle, or pastparticiple). Although the vast majority of English verbs are regular, manyof the most commonly used verbs are irregular.

Verbs can be modified, or described, by adverbs.

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