Regular and Irregular Verbs
Verbs are the important components of a language. They express the actions we do or the feeling we have. In English, there are two main groups of verbs: regular verbs and irregular verbs which make sense in different tenses.
Base form of the verbs
The base form of the verbs is used in present simple tense to talk about routines or something that is happening at the moment. In the infinitive form, we use to before the verb.
Example: She likes to paint the walls.
A gerund is a form in which a verb is used with –ing. Sometimes the part of speech of a word is changed from verb to noun when added –ing.
Example: Speaking English is an advantage in a foreign country.
The Past Participle
There are three structures in which the past participle form of the verb is being used. To make this form we can add –ed to base form of the regular verbs or use the right form of the irregular forms.
Present perfect: I’ve finished my homework.
*finished is past participle form of do
Present Passive: the door is closed.
*closed is the past participle
Past Passive: the car was washed.
*washed is the past participle
Past and past participle forms of regular verbs are simple to form; all you have to do is adding ‘-ed’ or ‘-d’ to these verbs. ‘-d’ is added to the verbs which already have ‘e’ as their last letter such as ‘bake’, so its past form would be baked. To other regular verbs such as call, wash, walk, etc. that do not have ‘e’ as their final letters we should add ‘-ed’ to form the past and past participle forms.
The verbs which do not have a normal or special role to be formed; so they should be memorized and remembered. There are about 200 irregular verbs in English which are divided into four groups:
These irregular verbs are used in the same form in all tenses.
Example: Hurt/put /set/ let/ cost/ hit/ bet
Base form: I set the table every morning. (simple present)
Past simple: I set the table yesterday.
Past participle: The table was set when we arrived. (past passive)
These irregular verbs have the same past and past participle forms but the base form is different. The majority of irregular verbs belong to this group and the best way to recognize them is to classify them in a list like the example below and try to memorize them or use them in different sentences.
For example: bring brought brought
Build built built
Burn burnt burnt
Say said said
Shoot shot shot
Tell told told
Leave left left
Base form: We build luxurious apartments.
Past simple: We built luxurious apartments.
Past participle: Luxurious apartments were built.
The simple past tense in the irregular verbs differs from the base and past simple forms. These verbs are run, come, become, etc.
Base form: I come home at 5 a.m. (simple present)
Past simple: I came home late yesterday. (Past simple)
Past participle: I’d come here when you were asleep. (Past perfect)
In this group, each form of the verb is different from the others. This makes it easier not to confuse the forms. Although it can be much easier to choose the right form in a sentence, due to the variety of these verbs, it can be somehow challenging to keep all forms in mind.
Some of the common verbs that are included in this group are:
Write wrote written
Speak spoke spoken
Go went gone
See saw seen
Eat ate eaten
Drink drank drunk
Know knew known
Give gave given
Example: I eat cookies every morning.
I ate cookies last night.
The cookies were eaten.