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Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2010 10:06 pm
by Anja
Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

I been wanting to do a lesson on Verbs since I joined FW, but after I met my cowboy and after writing “The Wrote-Off Writer,” I wanted to do this lesson even more... so here it is.

I do understand that using the wrong verb tense is sometimes part of your particular “dialect,” and that is fine. For my cowboy, it's the vernacular; it's his language, and to me, it's rather endearing. It’s also okay to use for story dialogue. But for formal essays, and in general, for your fiction writing, it is NOT fine.

Verbs have three Principal Parts: Present, Past, and Past Participle.


I ask (Present)
I asked (Past)
I had asked (Past Participle)

I jump
I jumped
I had jumped

I love
I loved
I had loved


Get the idea?

Now, it’s all fine for regular verbs, which are the ones that you make into the past or past participle by adding “ed.” The trouble begins when you use irregular verbs... and knowing when to use the auxiliary verb “HAD.”


This is where my cowboy (real name = Dan) and the story “The Wrote-Off Writer” comes in. (And also a few of my other trapper / cowboy / farmer-type characters in a few of my stories.)

Because those people (and some of you) LEAVE OUT the auxiliary verb when using the PAST PARTICIPLE form of the verb

OR

ADD the auxiliary verb when using the SIMPLE PAST TENSE.

I had saw a bear. (Incorrect)
I seen a bear. (Incorrect)

(My eyes are bleeding just typing that out for you.)

The most common mistakes I hear - in public - from people who SEEM to be otherwise well-educated are:

She HAD WENT to town.
He HAD BROKE the cup.
The dog HAD TORE up the flower bed.
The cowboy HAD already RODE all over looking for the lost steer.


All the above are examples of ADDING an auxiliary with the PAST TENSE.

Here are some more:

The horse RUN around the field.
They BEGUN the concert at 7 p.m.
The choir SUNG four songs on Easter Sunday.


These examples show using the PAST PARTICIPLE WITHOUT an Auxiliary VERB

How do you know what to use?
YOU HAVE TO LEARN IRREGULAR VERBS. Yes, memorize them.

BOOKMARK this list as a reference.


Irregular Verbs

Anything in the third column (Past Participle) MUST USE an auxiliary verb.

I don’t even want to mention totally wrong forms of verbs, but I will because it is just as common.


frozed
shooked
drug (As in: The farmer DRUG the plough through the dirt.)
writed
swang
throwed
stang
choosed
drawed


Those words are FINE - IF you are writing AUTHENTIC dialogue, but even real cowboys or farmers wouldn’t use some of those words). And they are great if your four-year-old is learning to talk.

So... write me some sentences... incorrect AND correct... just let me know which are which.

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 8:37 pm
by helen1975
Hi Ann,

I'm not sure if you are still following this link (it's pretty old!) but I thought I'd throw some sentences down.

Most of this is straight forward in my mind, but there are a few tricky ones I wanted to check.

I see a bear.
I saw a bear.
I had seen a bear.


I will become angry if you keep that up. (present)
I became angry when you kept that up. (past)
I had become angry when you had kept that up. (past participle).


I will buy that jumper. - present
I bought that jumper. - past and past participle

The following one is bugging me!

Today I brought the pasta salad.
I brought the pasta salad.
I had brung the pasta salad. or I had brought the pasta salad.

**Dictionary.com tells us that 'brung' is "a past participle and simple past tense of bring." It just doesn't sound right, but then neither does the second option! :heehee

Any thoughts, corrections are always welcome!

:thankssign Helen

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 3:16 pm
by Anja
It's a good thing I haven't had lunch yet, because I would have spewed on my laptop.

NO.

Do not use brung. Or brang. Or broughten.

It is slang. It is bad grammar. As always, it's perfectly fine for dialogue if your character is an uneducated redneck.

A short while ago, Jan mentioned the flagrant and incorrect use of drug as the past tense for drag. NO.

Same goes for tooken.

Dictionary.com may have had a note that "brung" is a common slang term. I hope it did not endorse it as accepted and correct grammar. :shocked

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 6:25 pm
by helen1975
I apogise for your near loss of lunch!

I returned to Dictionary.com and found the error was mine :oops: They have the listing as "Verb: dialect." This was yet another learning point for me, to read the information properly! :roll:

Blessings,

Helen

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Thu Nov 28, 2013 11:19 am
by Caleb Cheong
Hi Ann!

Is the Present Participle another part of a verb? Does it serve any useful purposes in fiction and non-fiction writing?



Thank you.

Looking forward to hearing from you.


Regards

Caleb

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:36 pm
by Shann
Hey Caleb, I was just perusing and saw your answer. Ann's not been around for a while and perhaps you've taken your question to Jan already, but I wanted to answer just in case...
I found several helpful sites: http://www.edufind.com/english/grammar/ ... iciple.php
The present participle is the base verb and an ing
EX:
I an walking.
She is singing.

After verbs of movement.
EX:
to go shopping
My favorite site is http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/verbs.htm

In one respect, the present participle is a simple, straightforward construction and is formed by adding -ing to the base form of a verb. No exceptions.

But after that, it gets a bit more complicated. This site gives the following advice: http://grammar.about.com/od/irregularve ... le-FAQ.htm


For one thing, the label is misleading. It's true that the present participle (in this example, rising) sometimes appears to indicate present time: She looks at the rising sun.

But when the tense of the main verb changes to the simple past, the time of the "present" participle seems to change right along with it:
She looked at the rising sun.
And when the main verb points to the future, the "present" participle again tags along:
She will look at the rising sun.

The truth is, the present participle really doesn't mark time at all. That job is reserved for the main verb and its auxiliaries. And for this reason, many linguists prefer to use the term -ing form rather than present participle.


When a verb plus -ing does the job of a noun, it becomes a gerund.

Then again, when an -ing word is combined with the auxiliary verb to be, it functions as a verb:

The price of oil is rising.
This construction is called the present progressive.

I hope it helps a little. If you do have more questions, and haven't asked Jan yet, I'd urge you to do so.

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 8:17 pm
by RachelM
Thanks, Shann! Much of this seems over my head. I think I need to take a grammar course. Does anyone know of a good online course?

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 8:40 pm
by Shann
Not a course per se but when checking things I love grammar girl and I have a site that gives a quiz after each lesson. It's one of my favorites, but all you really need is a good editor. :mrgreen:
http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/commas.htm

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 9:39 am
by Caleb Cheong
Hi !

What I really meant was these examples used here.


The wind was howling.
The leaves were rustling.
The dogs were barking nervously.

These sentences set the scene for something about to take place in a narrative.


Other examples are:

Jim walked out of the room, shouting angrily at everybody.

"It's been paid, and raising your voice won't make me change my mind."

While walking briskly home, Jim met an old friend of his.


Thank you.



Caleb

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:39 am
by glorybee
Caleb, I've read your previous question and also your question from today. I'm not clear exactly what you're asking. I do know that Ann (the gal who started this grammar forum) is recovering from surgery, and is unlikely to stop by here. In fact, this particular forum isn't really active any more and should probably be taken from the boards.

However--if you can clarify your question, I'll give it a shot. Are you asking if your examples are grammatically correct? They are.

A lot of writers try to avoid forms of "to be" in their sentences. Your sentences could be rewritten without them, thus:

The wind howled.
The leaves rustled.
The dogs barked nervously.

You'd have to decide which version works best in your particular narrative.

Your longer examples are also grammatically correct. The -ing forms of the verbs you chose (shouting, raising, walking) give a sense of present action to past tense sentences, and they are very effective there.

I hope I've addressed your questions. If not, you could PM me, or you could move your questions to my Writing Forum where someone more grammatically knowledgeable could give them some attention.

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 11:25 am
by Caleb Cheong
Hi Jan!

Thank you for your response. I'm sorry as I was in the dark about Ann's surgery. I wish her well and speedy recovery. I mention the Present Participle( the -ing form) for common benefit/interest so that we can explore this area of grammar to develop our skills in writing. It is an open discussion. My sincere apologies if you have perceived it otherwise.


Once again, thousand apologies.



Sincerely

Caleb Cheong

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 11:39 am
by glorybee
Oh goodness, no apologies necessary.

It would be wonderful if FW had an expert grammarian, one perhaps with a degree in English, who could take over this forum and field grammar questions.

If any of you know of such a person, let me know, and I'll contact them (and Ann, too, since we are friends) and see about reviving this forum.

Re: Principle Parts of a Verb - And How to Use Them Properly

PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 11:27 pm
by Anja
I don't know why, but I decided to check in here tonight from my hospital bed. Head is muzzy, and I am also unclear what you are asking, Caleb. If you give me a day or two, I will come back and try to answer.

One thing I will say, try not to over think grammar. If you are like me (and I think I speak for Jan), you already have a good grasp, but our natures want it "correct" and impeccably so. If you overthink, you may actually do your writing a disfavour.

What you wrote above is perfectly fine.