A verb describes what a person or thing does or what happens. For example, verbs describe:
an action – run, hit, travel
an event – rain, occur
a situation – be, seem, have
a change – become, grow, develop
The basic form of a verb is known as the infinitive. It’s often preceded by the word ‘to’:
Molly decided to follow him.
He began to run back.
Be', 'do', and 'have' are all auxiliary verbs. Find out what that means, and how modal verbs fit into this classification.
Can you tell your indicative mood from your interrogative mood? After reading our guide, you’ll know all five moods in English and how to use them.
Do you know what the two kinds of participles in English are, and what form they normally take? If you’re not sure, take a look at our guide.
Some verbs can be used in partnership with an adverb or preposition to mean something else entirely. Learn how to use phrasal verbs with our guide.
Regular and irregular verbs
Regular verbs form different tenses according to an established pattern (adding –s, -ed, or –ing, for example), while irregular verbs do not. Find out more.
Subjects and objects
All verbs have ‘subjects’, and many verbs also have direct objects or indirect objects. If that sounds complicated, here’s how to help you get it straight.
Transitive and intransitive verbs
If you’re not sure what the difference between transitive and intransitive verbs is, or how to use verbs with objects, then check out our handy guidelines.
Sometimes the different verb tenses are hard to understand. This article explains them; the past, the present, and the future tense, and their differences.
How did the orangutan get its name? What about the aardvark or the squirrel? We delve into the jungle of animal etymologies.
We take a look at several popular, though confusing, punctuation marks.