Verbs (Types of Verbs & Examples) – complete guide

It expresses the action, movement, or existence of a thing. Here the users will find the verbs definition, types & examples of verb.


Verbs express the action, movement, or existence of a thing. Their function is to make statements, to ask questions, and to give orders. They are also used with a subject to say what someone or something does, or what happens to them.

For example:

“John writes a letter”.

Here writing a letter shows an action which is an example of a verb.

“He did not come yesterday”.

In this sentence, the word ‘come’ shows action that is also an example of the verb.

The English verb is inflected i.e. it changes form according to changing conditions. These conditions are known as Mood, Tense, Voice, and Number.

What is Mood?

The great majority of sentences have their verbs in the Indicative Mood with which we make statements and questions. For example, “He went for a walk”. “Did he go for a walk?

To give orders we use the Imperative Mood. For example, Come here. Please, go there.

To express wish, hope, fear, doubt, condition, we occasionally use the subjunctive Mood, but this is falling more and more into disuse in English.

Example: Long live the King! If I were you. If this is true. May you fail, as you deserve.

What are Infinitives?

There are four parts of the verb which do not change their form with changing conditions. These are called Infinite. Since they are not finite or limited by tense, number, person, etc. They are:

  1. The Infinitive proper:        to go, to see, to write.
  2. The Present Participle:     going, seeing, writing
  3. The Past Participle:           gone, seen, written
  4. The Gerud:                         It has the same form as the present participle.

His writing is bad.

I examined his writing.

The Infinitive is the name of the verb and is usually preceded by the word to. It can also be used as a noun:

To err is human. To rise early is a good thing.

To is omitted after certain verbs:

  1. I made him stand
  2. You need not worry
  3. He dare not touch me.

What are Participles?

The participles are part adjective. In the sentence, ‘He gave a written statement’, the same has adjectival quality whereas, in the sentence, ‘The statement was written by him, is the verbal quality.


  • Present                      (Bite)
  • Past                            (Bit)
  • Past Participle            (Bitten)

Types of Verb:

  1. Transitive
  2. Intransitive
  3. Auxiliary or Helping
  4. Regular & Irregular
  1. Transitive: It means going across. In ‘transitive verb’ the action does not stop with the subject but passes from the subject to the object. For example in a sentence, Nick shot a bird, the act of shooting passes over from Nick (subject) to the bird (object), ‘shot’ is, therefore, a Transitive Verb.

Transitive verbs have two objects:

  1. Indirect Object
  2. Direct Object

Indirect Object:  An indirect object always denotes some person.

Direct Object:   The direct object denotes a thing.

The verbs like, be, am, is, are, was, were cannot take objects, for they do not state actions being done. For example, Randy is a soldier does not mean that ‘Randy’ did something to a soldier but simply states that ‘Randy’ and the soldier are the same persons. The word solider is called the complement.

These verbs therefore cannot take objects. Thus we do not say, I am him of whom you were speaking: but, “I am he of whom you were speaking”.

Examples in sentences:

  • She reads a book.
  • We play hockey.
  • John is writing the homework.
  • The hen laid an egg.
  • The cow eats grass.           
  • He cleans the room.
  • Jessy is washing clothes.
  • John is driving the car.
  • He is eating food.
  • The baby is crying for the toy.
  • He is shivering with cold.

Intransitive: The action denoted by a verb does not go beyond the subject. These verbs do not require an object.

Example in sentences:

  • He sleeps.
  • He runs.
  • The child sleeps.
  • Dogs bark.
  • I smile.
  • He died.
  • He has reached.

The above sentences do not need any object and they are complete in all their sense. The verbs are already present to show the actions performed in each sentence.

Auxiliary or Helping: When the principal verb requires another verb to make its meaning clear, it is called auxiliary or helping verb. It tells us the tense of the sentence. It is also used to form negative and interrogative sentences. Helping verbs have two types:

  • Primary
  • Modals
  1. Primary: There are following primary verbs in grammar. Such as, be, do, have.
  2. Modals: Can, Coul, May, Might, Will, Would, Shall, Should, Must, Ought, to are modals verbs.

Examples in sentences:

  • She has eaten food.
  • I can speak Chinese.
  • Julia will do that.
  • Will he help me?
  • I might reach there.
  • I used to like a banana.
  • You should go there.
  • Would you like this burger?
  1. Regular Verbs: The words that end with ‘ed’ are called regular verbs. Such as looked, worked, hanged. Some examples are as under:
First FormSecond FormThird Form
Look LookedLooked
Share SharedShared
  • Irregular Verbs: The words in which the 2nd and 3rd forms are different.
First FormSecond FormThird Form
BeautifulMore beautifulMost beautiful

Further Reading:

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