English Grammar Overview - Parts of Speech - Verbs
Moving down our list of parts of speech, we have our verbs. The first big difference between verbs that we need to look at is whether it's an action verb or a state verb. Our action verbs, as the name suggests, mean that we typically can see these things in action. We can see people working and we certainly see people going to various places. Now, we have our state verbs. These are basically indicating a state of being. Two examples would be "seem" and "have" or "own". We have a sentence such as "He seems angry." and "I own my house." You can't actually see the action happening, even though those words are used as verbs. A very big differentiation between the two here as well is, state verbs typically don't take the progressive or continuous form. That form is the verb "+ing". As I said before, "He seems angry." It would be very awkward to hear someone say "He's seeming angry." Additionally, "own" I said "I own my house." It would seem very awkward to hear somebody say "He is owning his house." However, these action verbs do often take the "-ing" form. We could easily say "They are working." or "They are going." These are the progressive or continuous forms of the verb. We'll get into that when we talk about our various tenses. Another important type of verb is the auxiliary verb, more commonly referred to as the helping verb. These verbs aren't the main verbs within a sentence but they help us form various structures. For instance, they can help us make questions. If I ask the question "Do I live in Tokyo," "do" is the auxiliary verb. It helped me form the question. It helps us form negatives. If I said "I do not live in Tokyo." Again, it's helping me form the negative statement and the auxiliary verb there is "do". It helps us form the short answers. If I were to be asked "Do you live in Tokyo?" I can form the short answer "Yes, I do." Here, the auxiliary verb in the short answer must reflect the auxiliary verb used in the question.
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