Tuesday, August 30, 2016


Verbs are the words in a sentence that describe the action of a sentence or that introduce the condition or state of someone or something in the sentence.
            Action: Anna throws the ball.
            Introduction of a condition: Trent is very sick.

There are many action verbs. Those that can have a direct object are often called transitive verbs. Here is a list of some commonly used transitive verbs. Note that they can be used with a direct object.

Transitive Verbs                                 Used in a Sentence
buy                                                       He buys a newspaper.
carry                                                     I am carrying the child.
find                                                      Can you find the book?
help                                                      She helps us.
like                                                       I don’t like cabbage.
lose                                                       Don’t lose your money.
read                                                      She is reading a book.
pull                                                       The dentist pulled the tooth.
push                                                      The boy pushes the cart.
sell                                                        I am selling my car.
speak                                                    Father speaks Spanish.
write                                                     We are writing some postcards.
understand                                            Do you understand me?

Intransitive verbs are not followed by a direct object. They often show a movement to a place and are sometimes followed by a prepositional phrase. Following is a list of some commonly used intransitive verbs:

Intransitive Verbs                              Used in a Sentence
come                                                    Can you come to the party?
crawl                                                    The baby crawls on the floor.
drive                                                    We are driving fast.
fly                                                        I flew here from Paris.
go                                                        Are you going home?
hurry                                                    We hurry to the window.
jump                                                    Peter jumps from the roof.
ride                                                      I am riding in his car.
run                                                       The girls run past the school.
sail                                                       We are sailing to Europe.
travel                                                   Do you want to travel with us?
walk                                                     I walk out of the theater.

Still other verbs introduce the condition or state of someone or something. They do not take a direct object and are most often followed by an adjective. These verbs are usually called linking verbs. Here are some commonly used linking verbs:

Linking Verbs                                                 Used in a Sentence
appear                                                               The boy appears quite well.
be                                                                      I am hungry.
become                                                             The weather becomes bad.
feel                                                                    It feels hot.
grow                                                                 The dog is growing weak.
look                                                                  She looks unhappy.
seem                                                                 The coat seems too small for you.
smell                                                                 The pizza smells good.
sound                                                                The music sounds awful.
taste                                                                  The popcorn tastes salty.

Careful! Some of the linking verbs have a second usage. They can be used as transitive verbs. Look at these examples:

            Linking Verb: His skin feels hot. (hot = adjective)
            Transitive Verb: He feels a sharp pain. (a sharp pain = direct object)

            Linking Verb: The sky grows cloudy. (adjective)
            Transitive Verb: We grow vegetables. (direct object)

            Linking Verb: That smells beautiful. (adjective)
            Transitive Verb: She smells the flowers. (direct object)

            Linking Verb: My coffee tastes bitter. (adjective)
            Transitive Verb: Raisa tasted the ice cream. (direct object)

You can identify linking verbs by substituting am, is, or are for the verb. If the sentence makes sense with the substitution, it is a linking verb. If it does not make sense, it is a transitive verb. Some examples:

            It feels cold. (It is cold.) This makes sense. = Linking Verb
            He feels her pulse. (He is her pulse.) This makes no sense. = Transitive Verb
            They smell nice. (They are nice.) This makes sense. = Linking Verb
            We smell coffee. (We are coffee.) This makes no sense. = Transitive Verb

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