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Identify the verbs in the following sentences by underlining the auxiliary verb once and the main verb twice.

1) Helen is going to take her entrance exams to the University.

2) Will she pass her exams?

3) She should study hard.

4) Does she work hard on her exams?

5) She has been reading for 6 hours a day all this year round.

6) She became a finalist for a Morehead Scholarship.

7) The cafeteria food smelled terrible.

8) These pears taste delicious.

9) The professor is his office.

10) She was my roommate.

11) He is living in Germany.

12) He doesn’t have any money.

13) I saw an elephant at the zoo but I did not see a giraffe.

14) They could have seen a giraffe.

15) They must have been being advised by the government.


Determine if the following sentences contain a transitive (T) or intransitive (I) verb.

1) He told Mary of a party at the Student Union.

2) Dennis cried to his girlfriend about his low economics degree.

3) My mother always says, “Think before you speak”.

4) He showed me the new computer printer.

5) The bell rings to end school.

6) He is young, but he’s learning fast.

7) What did you learn at school today?

8) Could you stop the bus, please? I want to get off.

9) Do you think you could stop in front of the post office?

10) We are running a course of English.

11) I can’t run as fast as I used to.

12) She is studying for a law degree.

13) He studied law at university.

14) You are not allowed to drive a car until you are eighteen.

15) She learned to drive when she was eighteen.


Use the verb given at the left in the Infinitive, the s-form, the -ing form or the -ed form to fill in the blanks. Translate the sentences into Russian.

know 1) Your father … that we’re here.

cost 2) Those cameras … too much for me.

seem 3) Paul … interested.

like 4) I … coffee very much.

take 5) John … Mary to the movies every Friday.

look 6) The children … just like their mother.

remember 7) We … everything you told us.

bark 8) … dogs seldom bite.

see 9) … her is to love her.

win 10) … is his main desire.

threaten 11) The … letter alarmed him.

come 12) His … to town was unexpected.

lock 13) He answered through the … door.

speak 14) Generally …, I don’t like dogs.

change 15) I have found her … .





Time and Tense


As it was mentioned above, verbs express action or a state of being.

Since action and a state of being involve time – a universal concept with three divisions for past, present and future – verbs have linguistic means to indicate time, and they are called tenses.

The system of tenses that a verb may have is different in different languages and this fact causes difficulties for foreign language learners.

The Tenses in English


The system of tenses in English includes the groups of Indefinite, Perfect, Continuous and Perfect Continuous Tenses.



Indefinite Tenses

In English, there are Indefinite(or Simple) Tenses that are generally used to denote:

a) a habitual action and that which is true regardless of time (the Present Indefinite,or Simple Present): The sun sets in the west. Justice is important),

b) an action that took place in the past time(the Past Indefinite,or Simple Past): He opened a bank account two years ago. John ate his dinner at eight),

c) an action that will take place at a certain time (the Future Indefinite,or Simple Future): I shall/will do it tomorrow. He will be here in half an hour).


In the diagram below, the group of Indefinite Tenses is presented with a O-sign on the line of time:


Past Present Future

Indefinite Indefinite Indefinite

------------------------O-------------------O---------------------O---------------- (time)

2. Perfect Tenses

The actions, however, may take place at any other time and be completed by a certain time in the present, past or future, and these are expressed in English by means of Perfect Tenses.

Perfect Tensesgenerally denote an action which:

a) ended prior to some definite time or action in the past (The Past Perfect): She had finished her work before she went to bed. John had lived in New York for ten years before he moved to Chicago ;

b)began in the past and has just been finished or is continuing in to the present (The Present Perfect):Ihavejustseenher.Hehas been here for a week;

c) will be completed before some definite time in the future (The Future Perfect):They will have finished their book by next year.By the time she gets married, she will have learned to cook.

The group ofPerfect Tensesare presented in the diagram below:


Past Present Future

Indefinite Indefinite Indefinite

-- -- -- ------------- O -------------------- O ------------------------- O -----------

Past Perfect Present Perfect Future Perfect (time)



Thus, we may say, there are at least six tenses in the English language:


  Regular verbs Irregular verbs
The Present Indefinite: walk, walks go, goes
The Past Indefinite: walked went
The Future Indefinite: shall/will walk shall/will go
The Present Perfect: have/has walked have/has gone
The Past Perfect: had walked had gone
The Future Perfect: shall/will have walked shall/will have gone



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