GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS OF NON-FINITE FORMS OF THE VERB
1. Non-finite forms of the verb usually denote a secondary action or a process related to the one expressed by a finite verb.
· Bobby started skating on the frozen lake. (‘started’ – primary action; ‘skating’ – secondary action)
· Fiona decided to leave on Monday. (‘decided’ - primary action; ‘to leave’ - secondary action)
2. The verbals have Present Participle/ Participle I Past Participle / Participle II a double nature: nominaland verbal
participle I and II = verb + adjective
· I saw a smiling girl in the window.
· The book given to me by Peter was not very interesting.
gerund / infinitive = verb + noun
· Learning foreign languages is hard work.
· To learn a foreign language well, one must work hard.
3. The verbals do not express person, number or mood.
4. The verbals have the following distinctions /categories:
a) aspect (Indefinite (Common/ Simple) or Continuous),
b) correlation (Non-Perfect or Perfect)
c) voice (Active or Passive)
5. The verbals seldom function as predicates but are often used as part of predicates, e.g.
· You Present Participle/ Participle I Past Participle / Participle II might have encouraged the kid before the exam. (compound verbal modal predicate with infinitive)
· Jim was painting the bedroom when his wife came home from work. (simple verbal predicate with participle I)
· After that heated discussion the girls looked angry and frustrated. (compound nominal predicate with participle II)
· Kate kept on laughing and splashing water on Jake. (compound verbal aspect predicate with gerund)
SUMMARY OF GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS OF VERBALS
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ASPECT CORRELATION VOICE