Chapter 5-5-1: The Participle

Grammar > Using Verbs > Verbals > Participle


A participle is an adjective formed from a verb. To make a present participle, you add "-ing" to the verb, sometimes doubling the final consonant:

"think" becomes "thinking"

"fall" becomes "falling"

"run" becomes "running"

Observe that an "n" got added to "running" and the "e" disappeared in "living." You can see that there are some rules on how to form the present participle.

Rules for Creating the Present Participle

Here are some useful rules that require learners to look at how the base form of a verb ends when trying to create a present participle. You may wish to bookmark this reference:

Definition and Rules for Creating the Past Participle

The second type of participle, the past participle, is a little more complicated since not all verbs form the past tense regularly. The past participle normally describes a completed action. It is commonly used in the formation of perfect verb tenses. It is always used in the formation of passive voice tenses. The following are all past participles:

the sunken ship

a ruined city

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Note that only transitive verbs can use their past participles as adjectives and that, unlike other verbals, past participles do not take objects (unless they are part of a compound verb).

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Attribution information for this page: Written by Heather MacFadyen with adaptations from as well as Aim Publishing
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