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English definition of “verb”


noun [C]     /vɜːb/ US  /vɝːb/
A2 a word or phrase that describes an action, condition, or experience: The words 'run', 'keep', and 'feel' are all verbs.Parts of speech Grammar:Compound verbsCompound verbs are two words which combine to make one meaning. The first word is usually a noun, an adjective or a preposition, and the second word is a verb. The words are sometimes written as one word and sometimes joined by hyphens. A good learner’s dictionary will tell you how the compound is normally written:See moreGrammar:Verbs: typesSee moreGrammar:Main verbsMain verbs have meanings related to actions, events and states. Most verbs in English are main verbs:See moreGrammar:Linking verbsSome main verbs are called linking verbs (or copular verbs). These verbs are not followed by objects. Instead, they are followed by phrases which give extra information about the subject (e.g. noun phrases, adjective phrases, adverb phrases or prepositional phrases). Linking verbs include:See moreGrammar:Auxiliary verbsThere are three auxiliary verbs in English: be, do and have. Auxiliary verbs come before main verbs.See moreGrammar:Modal verbsThe main modal verbs are:See moreGrammar:State and action verbsA verb refers to an action, event or state.See moreGrammar:VerbsVerbs are one of the four major word classes, along with nouns, adjectives and adverbs. A verb refers to an action, event or state.See moreGrammar:Verb phrasesA verb phrase consists of a main verb alone, or a main verb plus any modal and/or auxiliary verbs. The main verb always comes last in the verb phrase:See moreGrammar:Verbs: basic formsSee moreGrammar:Simple verb phrasesA simple verb phrase consists of a main verb. The verb in a simple verb phrase shows the type of clause (e.g. declarative, imperative):See moreGrammar:Complex verb phrasesA complex verb phrase may include one modal verb and one or more auxiliary verbs before the main verb. A modal verb always comes before any auxiliary verbs:See moreGrammar:Verbs and verb phrases: typical errorsSee moreGrammar:Verbs: the three basic formsMain verbs have three basic forms: the base form, the past form and the -ed form (sometimes called the ‘-ed participle’):See moreGrammar:Regular verbsMost verbs in English are regular. Regular verbs add -ing to the base form to make the -ing form, and -ed to the base form to make the past simple and the -ed form.See moreGrammar:Irregular verbsIrregular verbs follow the same rules as regular verbs for the present simple but have different forms for the past simple and the -ed form.See moreGrammar:Verbs: formationSee moreGrammar:Identifying verbsIt is not always possible to identify a verb by its form. However, some word-endings (suffixes) can show that the word is probably a verb.See more
(Definition of verb noun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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