5th Class English Verbs Verb


Category : 5th Class

Learning Objectives

This lesson will help you to:

Understand various types of Verbs.

Examine uses of Verbs.

Study Modals Auxiliaries.

Study application of Verbs, Modals Auxiliaries.  



Verbs are important elements of language and grammar. As our life is full of movements so verbs become an integral part of our speech, conversation and writing mode. Verbs determine the position and action of nouns and pronouns.  



Verbs are doing words. A verb can express:

A physical action (e.g. to swim, to write, to climb).

A mental action (e.g. to think, to guess, to consider).

A state of being (e.g. to be, to exist, to appear)

The verbs which express a state of being are the ones which take a little practice to spot, but, actually, they are the most common. The most common verb is the verb to be. That's the one which goes:



Here are some sentences with the verbs highlighted. (These verbs express physical actions.)                                       Examples:                                       

She sell leather bags. (In this example, the word sells is a verb. It express the physical activity to sell.)

The doctor wrote the prescription. (In this example, the word wrote is a verb. It expresses the physical activity to write.)

Alison bought a ticket. (The word bought is a verb. It expresses the physical activity to buy.)  



As discussed in the beginning, verbs not only express physical actions like the ones above, they can express mental actions too: Examples:

She considers the job done. (The word considers is a verb. It expresses the mental activity to consider.)

Peter guessed the right number. (The word guessed is a verb. It expresses the mental activity to guess.)

I thought the same thing. (The word thought is a verb. It express the mental activity to think.)  



A small, but extremely important, group of verbs do not express any activity at all. The most important verb in this group- arguably of all- is the verb to be. As already mentioned, this is seen in forms like are, were, was, will be, etc.


Edwina is the largest elephant in this area. (The word 'is' is a verb from the verb to be.)

It was a joke. (The word was is a verb from the verb to be.)

I am. (The word am is a verb from the verb to be.) (Point of interest: I am is the shortest sentence in English.)  


Real - Life Example

Modal verbs, to you, means building upon the knowledge you already have. While most of you are able to explain what most verbs do, such as convey action, movement or behaviour, modal verbs might seem more mysterious. Modal verbs which conveys an attitude or mood. They include can, could, will, would, may, might, must, shall, should and ought. Modal verbs act differently than other verbs in English. They do not take the letter ?s? at their ends in the third person singular in the present tense. The word ?not? is placed before them to form their negatives, and they are not used in the past and future tenses. Write a short paragraph could be ?What I Could and Should Be Doing Right Now.?A sentence in your paragraph that uses modals might be. ?I should be doing my homework right now, but I might go to the party instead.?  

Now read these sentences:

1. The soldiers fight with the sword.

2. The soldiers fight bravely.


In sentence1, the action denoted by the verb 'fight' passes over from the doer or subject "soldiers' to some object 'sword'. The verb 'fight' is, therefore, called a Transitive verb. (Transitive means 'passing over')

In sentence 2, the action denoted by the verb 'fight' stops with the doer or subject 'soldiers' and does not pass over to an object. The verb 'fight' is, therefore, called an Intransitive verb. (Intransitive means 'not passing over)

Definition: A Transitive verb is a verb that denotes an action which passes over from the doer or subject to an object.

Definition: An Intransitive verb is a verb that denotes an action which does not pass over to an object, or which expresses a state or being; eg. He ran a long distance (action). The baby sleeps (state). There is a flaw in this diamond (being). (Intransitive verbs expressing 'being' take the same cases after them as before them.) Most Transitive verbs take a single object. But such Transitive verbs as give, ask, offer, promise, tell', etc., take two objects after them ?an Indirect object which denotes the ' person to whom' something is given or 'for whom' something is done, and a Direct object which is usually the name of some ' thing, as, His father gave him (indirect) a rupee (direct). He told me (indirect) a secret (direct).

Most verbs can be used both transitively and intransitively. E.g. The iceberg sank the ship. The driver stopped the truck. He spoke the truth. (Used Transitively). The ship sank rapidly. The truck stopped suddenly. He spoke haughtily. (Used Intransitively). But there are some verbs. E.g. Come, go, fall, die, sleep, lie denote actions which cannot be done to anything; they can never be used transitively.  



An auxiliary is a 'helping verb', used to make the form of another verb. The auxiliaries 'can, could, may, might, shall, should, will, would, must, ought, used, need, dare are often distinguished by being referred to as modal auxiliaries or modals. We can express conceptions of the mind as ability (e.g. can, could), possibility (e.g. may, might), permission (e.g. may, might, can, could) and obligation (must, ought, have to).



usually expresses ability or capacity; e.g.-i can swim across the river. Can you lift this box? MAY is used to express permission; e.g.-You may go now. May I borrow your book? COULD and MIGHT are used as the past equivalent of Can and May; e.g. ?I could swim across the river when I was young (ability), I thought he might be at home (possibility).  


is used in the first person and WILL in the second person and third person to express pure future; e.g. I shall be nineteen next birthday. Tomorrow will be a holiday. SHALL is used in the second and third persons to express a command, a promise or threat; e.g. He shall return me the money by next Monday (command). You shall get the bonus tomorrow (promise). They shall be punished for this crime (threat). SHALL is used in the second and third persons to ask after the will of the person addressed; e.g. Shall I open the window? WILL is used to express:

(a) Willingness: as- I will try to do better the next time.

(b) Characteristic habit: as- They will sit for hours to watch the cricket.

(c) Assumption or probability: as- This will be the shirt you want, I suppose.

WILL you? indicates an invitation or request; as- Will you lend me your book? SHOULD and WOULD are used as the past equivalents of shall and will: as-I expected that I should / would get a first class. SHOULD is used in all persons to express duty or obligation: as- You should keep your promise.   MUST expresses: (a) Necessity or obligation: as-One must work or will starve. (b) Fixed determination: as-I must have my way in this matter. Important verb charts on nouns, adjectives and animal sounds.  








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