Words – And Their Functions (Part 3 – VERBS)

20 Aug

How are you? I hope you do like my previous article entitled “An Intermezzo”.  To make you feel relax in learning English and treat these lessons as a fun activity.  If not then you’ll be in trouble. You will ignore to practice it or do the drillings.  You will avoid any chance to practice your spoken English.  So what? You gain nothing but wasting your time. Remember NO TRY NO GAIN.  Now let’s continue reading something about VERBS.

As you are all well aware  — VERBS are the action words  — the doing, being, having words  — and you can put to in front — to sit,  to hide,  to sing, etc.

Verbs can be:

one word: He wrote letter yesterday.

two words: John is coming (or John’s coming)

three words: I’ll be seeing you tonight. (will be seeing)

more than three: By September they will have been living here for two years.

There are also Verbs as Complements:

Some verbs can take another verb as the complement instead of a noun.  Sometimes the verb functioning as the complement must be in the infinitive (to + verb) and  sometimes it must be in the gerund (verb + ing) form. 

* Please notice of the following verbs that are always followed by the infinitive if the complement is a verb.

agree/attempt/claim/decide/demand/desire/ fail/forget/hesitate

hope/  intend/ learn/ need / offer/ plan/ prepare/ pretend/refuse                seem/  strive/ tend  / try    / want/wish


  1. John expects to begin studying law next semester.
  2.  Mary learned to swim when she was very young.
  3.  The budget committee decided to postpone this meeting.
  4. The soldiers are preparing to attack the village.
  5. Cynthia has agreed to act as a liason between the two countries.

** Verbs that are always followed by the gerund:

admin/appreciate / avoid / can’t help/ consider / delay                                                deny  / enjoy / finish / mind /  miss  / postpone  / practice/quite                       recall  / regret  / report/ resent / resist/ resume / risk /suggest


  1. John admitted stealing the jewels.
  2. We enjoyed seeing them again after so many years
  3. You shouldn’t risk entering that building in its present condition.
  4. Michael was considering buying a new car until the prices went up
  5. Would you mind not smoking in this office?

The following verbs can be followed by either the infinitive or the gerund with no change in meaning:

begin/can’t stand/continue/dread/hate/like/love/prefer/start.


  1. He started to study after dinner. or He started studying after dinner.
  2. Joan hates to ride her bicycle to school. or Joan hates riding her bicycle to school.
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Posted by on August 20, 2011 in Uncategorized


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