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  • Иностранные языки

Verbals theory по английскому языку





The nominal features of the infinitive are displayed in its syntactical functions in the sentence. It can function as:

  1. the subject of the sentence:

To travel means to enlarge your horizons.

  1. a predicative

To forgive is to understand all.

  1. an object:

Will you teach me to dance?

  1. an attribute:

There is a problem to solve.

The verbal features of the infinitive are:

  1. It has tense, aspect and voice distinctions (see further)

  1. The infinitive of a transitive verb has a direct object:

I hope to see you there.

  1. It can be modified by an adverb:

Our aim is to speak English fluently.

The forms of the infinitive

Active Passive

Indefinite to do to be done

Continuous to be doing ---------

Perfect to have done to have been done

Perfect Continuous to have been doing ---------

The tense distinctions of the infinitive are relative, not absolute (the indefinite infinitive expresses simultaneity, the perfect infinitive expresses priority).

He helped us to do the work. (simultaneity)

I’m sorry to have been of so little help. (priority)

Note 1. After the modal verbs should, could, ought to, might, to be to the perfect infinitive is used to show that the action considered desirable or planned was not carried out:

You should have phoned me at once.

I ought to have known it.

Note 2. After the past tense of the verbs to hope, to intend, to expect the perfect infinitive is used to show that the action was not carried out:

I intended to finish the book soon. (maybe I did it)

I intended to have finished the book soon. (but I didn’t)

The continuous non-perfect infinitive expresses an action in its progress simultaneous with the action of the finite verb:

You don’t seem to be listening.

The perfect continuous infinitive expresses an action in progress which began or took place before the action expressed by the finite verb:

Christopher, when she opened the door, appeared to have been drinking.


The particle to is the indication of the infinitive. But there are cases when it is omitted. This takes place:

1. after the auxiliary verbs do, does, shall, will, should, would:

— Do you speak French? — I don't know it.

— Shall I help them? — They will do it themselves.

What should I do? — We would call you if we could.

2. after the modal verbs (except ought to, be to, have to) and the modal phrases (had better, would rather, cannot but, nothing but, would sooner):

My sister can play football.

What must I do?

You'd better leave now.

We cannot but refuse him.

3. after the verbs of sense perception to hear, to see, to feel, to notice, to watch

Somebody heard him say that.

Nobody saw them leave.

We noticed her turn pale.

She watched the plane land.

Note. The verb to be after the verb to feel is used with the particle to: I felt it to be wrong. (The verb to feel is a verb of mental perception here).

But: if the verbs are in the Passive Voice the infini­tive is used with the participle "to".

He was heard to say that.

They were seen to leave.

She was made to do it.

4. after the verbs of compul­sion to let, to make and to have in the meaning to force:

Let us discuss the problem.

I'll make you understand it.

You can't make me do such a thing.

I’ll have him tell the truth.

Note. The verb let isn't used in the passive voice; the verb to allow is used instead.

They were allowed to come home late.

5. In questions starting with Why? (почему бы не?)

Why do it? Why risk it?

Why not go to a pub?

Why not tell us the whole story?


The Infinitive can be used in different syntactic functions:

1. a subject:

To live means to create.

Though the infinitive as the subject sometimes precedes the predicate, cases when it follows the predicate are more common. Then the sentence begins with the introductory “it”, which serves as an introductory subject.

It is important to do it now.

It is useless to discuss the question.

2. part of a compound verbal predicate:

a) part of a compound verbal modal predicate after modal verbs and the expressions had better, would rather, would sooner, to be going to:

You can do it without my help.

The train was to leave at midnight.

b) part of a compound verbal aspective predicate after aspective verbs (to begin, to start, to continue) and used to:

They began to discuss the question.

3. part of a compound nominal predicate (a predicative) after the link-verbs to be and to mean:

Our intention was to help you.

All we can do is to wait.

To live means to create.

4. part of a predicative

This pattern is rather typical of spoken English.

She was pleasant to look at.

His telephone number is easy to remember.

The form of the infinitive is only indefinite active.

5. an object.

  • after the verbs: to agree, to arrange, to decide, to expect, to fail, to help, to hope, to pretend, to manage, to refuse, to want and some others.

They arranged to visit him the next day.

He refused to see me.

She asked me to wait a little.

  • after the expressions to be glad, to be sorry, to be happy, etc:

I’m glad to see you here.

6. a postmodifying attribute (after nouns, indefinite and negative pronouns, ordinal numerals, the adjective “last”):

It is a nice place to live in.

Here is real1y nothing to worry about.

He was always the last to see a joke.

If we have a passive infinitive used attributively it expresses stronger modality:


This is a rule to remember.

This is a rule to be remembered. (The second is more emphatic)

7. an adverbial modifier

  1. of purpose (in order, so as)

I’ve come here to talk with you.

He stopped to smoke.

  1. of result

It mainly occurs after adjectives modified by the adverbs enough or too:

She knew French well enough to read books.

I’m too tired to go there.

  1. of unexpected result.

He awoke one morning to find himself famous.

He put his hand into his pocket to see his money gone.

d) of comparison or manner after as if, as though:

He stood up as if to greet me.

8. a parenthesis.

to be frank,

to tell the truth,

to begin with,

to crown it all,

to be sure,

to put it mildly,

to make things worse,

to say the least

needless to say;

to make a long story short,

to be exact, strange to say,

to say nothing.

to be on the safe side, etc.

9. part of a complex object, complex subject, for-phrase or of-phrase.



The Complex Object is a predicative construction which consists of a noun in the common case or a pronoun in the objective case and an infinitive.

The relations between the noun or the pronoun and the infinitive are similar to those between the subject and the predicate of the sentence. The infinitive in this construction is sometimes called a secondary predicate while the noun or the pronoun a secondary subject. They are considered to express predication like the subject and the predicate that’s why complexes with the infinitive as well as those with other verbals are called predicative.

The Complex Object with the infinitive is used after the following groups of verbs:

1) after the verbs of sense perception to see, to hear, to feel, to watch, to observe, to notice. The infinitive may be only indefinite active, the particle to is omitted.

I felt something touch my hand.

No one has ever heard her cry.

Note. When the verbs to see and to hear are used in the meaning of mental activity (to see= to understand, to hear=to know) a subordinate clause is used.

I saw that he didn’t know anything.

I hear that he left for the South last week.

2) After verbs of mental activity to think, to believe, to consider, to suppose, to find, to feel (=to consider), to mean, to understand:

I knew him to be a clever boy.

I don‘t expect this fine weather to continue.

All the forms of the infinitive may be used here.

The doctor found his heart to have stopped two hours before.

3) after the verbs of liking, disliking, wish: to want, to wish, to desire, to like, to love, to dislike, to hate:

He wants you to wait here.

I dislike you to talk like that.

The infinitive is only indefinite, sometimes passive:

I wish the work to be done in time.

He hated the window to be closed.

4) after the verbs of order, permission, request (the infinitive is only indefinite, preferably active):

- to allow, to permit, to order, to command, to force, to cause, to get (the infinitive is used with the particle to);

The doctor permitted the room to be aired.

He ordered the letter to be sent at once.

- to let, to have, to make (the particle to is omitted)

I won’t have you speak like that.

She made me obey her.

5) after certain verbs requiring a prepositional object: to count (up)on, to rely (up)on, to look for, to wait for, to listen to (without “to”)

I rely on you to come in time.

He was looking for somebody to help him

He was listening to the chairman speak.


The Complex Subject is a predicative construction which consists of two parts: nominal and verbal. The nominal part consists of a noun in the common case or a pronoun in the nominative case. The verbal part is expressed by an infinitive. The complex subject is used:

I. With the following predicate verbs in the passive voice:

a) the verbs of sense perception (mostly to see and to hear):

He was seen to enter the room.

The infinitive is indefinite active.

b) with the verbs of mental activity to think, to believe, to consider, to suppose, to know, to expect, to understand:

He is expected to be leaving tonight.

He is considered to be right.

He is known to have been a sailor in his youth.

c) with the verbs of order and permission: to force, to allow, to make, to order, etc.

I was made to repeat my story.

The infinitive is indefinite active.

d) with the verbs of saying: to say, to report, to announce, to declare. All the forms of the infinitive are possible here.

The storm was reported to be approaching.

The actress is said to have been popular in her youth.

Sentences of this type belong to the official bookish style. In colloquial English the combinations they say, people say are used.

II. The Complex Subject is used with the following verbs and expressions in the active voice:

a) with the verbs of seeming: to seem, to appear, to turn out, to prove, to happen. With the verb to happen the infinitive is never perfect, while after the other verbs all the forms of the infinitive are possible:

The weather seems to be changing.

This book seems to have been on sale all this time.

He turned out to be a good friend.

I happened to know his telephone number.

Note. With the verbs of seeming the predicate verb is used in the negative form to make the sentence negative.

He doesn’t seem to understand me.

b) with the expressions to be likely (unlikely), to be sure, to be certain. To be sure is used with reference to the future only, that is why the infinitive is indefinite active. With the other expressions the infinitive can be perfect.

They are sure to arrive in two days.

They are likely to have been offended by his joke.

Note. When the infinitive is part of a complex subject the particle to is always used.


A for-phrase with the infinitive is a predicative complex with the infinitive which can have different functions in the sentence, those of the subject, the predicative, an object, an attribute, an adverbial modifier:

It was very difficult for me to believe that (the subject).

That is for you to decide (the predicative).

We waited for the moon to rise (an object).

There was no need for him to answer (an attribute).

He stepped aside for us to pass (an adverbial modifier of purpose).

His home was too far west for anyone to come to meet him (an adverbial modifier of result).

There was time enough for her to calm herself (an adverbial modifier of result).


An of-phrase with the infinitive is a predicative complex with the infinitive which always functions as the real subject of the sentence beginning with the anticipatory it and follows the predicate whose predicative is expressed by such adjectives as good, kind, nice, silly, clever, bad, etc.

It was very kind of you to help me.

It is very bad of him not to have told them about that before.


These phrases may be introduced:

  1. by the conjunctive adverbs when, where, how, why

  2. by the conjunctive pronouns who(m), what, which

  3. by the conjunction whether

These phrases can perform different functions in the sentence, those of the subject, the predicative, an object or an attribute:

When to start is not yet decided (the subject).

The question is whom to invite (the predicative).

She had some doubt what to do next (an attribute).

We hesitated whether to accept the invitation or not (an object).



The nominal features of the gerund are:

  1. It can function as the subject, the predicative or an object (direct and prepositional).

  2. It can be preceded by a pre";line-height: 100%"> I didn’t like the idea of visiting them.

    1. It can be modified by a noun or a pronoun in the possessive case:

    I don’t quite like Mary’s (her) acting.

    The verbal features of the gerund are:

    1. It has tense distinctions (it can be indefinite and perfect reading, having read). The tense distinctions of the gerund are relative, not absolute (the indefinite form expresses simultaneity, the perfect form expresses priority).

    Note. In some cases we find an indefinite gerund instead of perfect expressing a prior action. This occurs after the verbs to remember, to forget, to excuse, to forgive, to thank, to accuse, to blame, to punish, to reward, to reproach and after the prepositions on (upon), after, without:

    I don’t remember hearing that before.

    1. It has voice distinctions (it can be active and passive being done, having been done):

    He liked neither reading nor being read to.

    Note. After the verbs to want, to need, to deserve, to require and the adjective worth an active gerund is used though it is passive in meaning:

    The child deserves praising.

    The dress wants washing.

    1. The gerund can take a direct object:

    I’ve made progress in speaking this language.

    1. It can be modified by an adverb:

    She burst out crying bitterly.

    The forms of the gerund

    Active Passive

    Indefinite running ---------

    sending being sent

    Perfect having run -----------

    having sent having been sent


    The Gerund can be used in different syntactic functions:

    1. a subject.

    It can occupy the front position in the sentence:

    Seeing is believing.

    It can follow the predicate:

    a) after the expressions with the anticipatory it it’s no use, it’s no good, it’s worth while

    It’s no use arguing about it.

    Note the difference in the function of the gerund:

    It’s worth while seeing the film.( a subject)

    The film is worth seeing. (an object)

    b) in the construction there is no…

    There was no going back.

    2. part of a compound verbal predicate:

    a) part of a compound verbal modal predicate after the modal phrase can’t help (doing smth):

    I couldn’t help smiling.

    b) part of a compound verbal aspective predicate.

    The gerund is interchangeable with the infinitive after the verbs

    to begin to continue

    to start to end

    to commence to cease

    They began discussing the question.

    Only the gerund is part of an aspective predicate after the verbs:

    to burst out to fall to

    to quit to stop

    to keep on to give up

    to finish

    She burst out laughing hysterically.

    He gave up smoking two years ago.

    3. part of a compound nominal predicate (a predicative):

    Our aim is getting there as soon as possible.

    4. a direct object. In this function the gerund follows

    • verbs used only with the gerund :

    to avoid to fancy to practise

    to appreciate to forgive to put off

    to admit to imagine to recall

    to celebrate to mention to recollect

    to consider to mind to resent

    to deny to miss to resist

    to enjoy to postpone to risk

    to excuse to feel like to suggest

    Avoid making mistakes.

    We didn't mind waiting.

    She couldn’t resist saying something.

    • the adjectives busy, worth.

    She is busy doing her task.

    The facts are worth mentioning.

    - verbs used either with the infinitive or the gerund

    allow like prefer

    can’t bear love recommend

    deserve need regret

    dread neglect remember

    fear omit require

    forget plan want

    hate permit

    The grass wants (needs) cutting.

    5. a prepositional object:

    - after the verbs

    to think of to depend on to accuse of

    to object to to blame for to congratulate on

    to apologize for to succeed in to believe in

    to prevent from to excuse for to get used to

    to insist on to look forward to to decide on (upon)

    to thank for to agree to to suspect of

    to forgive for to complain of to persist in

    to devote to to approve of to dream of (about)

    to assist in

    I thought of going to see my friend.

    Thank you for coming.

    We insisted on calling the doctor.

    I apologize for disturbing you.

    • after the expressions

    to be proud of to be ignorant of to be sorry for

    to be fond of to be sure of to be embarrassed at

    to be capable of to be angry at to be keen on

    to be afraid of to be pleased at to be wrong in

    to be tired of to be surprised at to be successful in

    to be used to to be accustomed to to be aware of

    to be good at to be engaged in to be interested in

    I'm tired of thinking about it.

    She is capable of taking care of herself.

    She is very good at singing.

    He was angry at seeing me there.

    6. an attribute

    In this function the gerund is always prepositional. The following nouns may precede the gerund:

    chance of trouble of

    idea of (in)convenience of

    way of advantage of

    habit of question of

    method of art of

    custom of opportunity of

    hope of problem of

    fear of right of

    intention of means of

    possibility of

    This is a good way of using the book.

    I had a good opportunity of seeing my friends.

    I didn't get a chance of speaking to him.

    After the following nouns the prepositions for, in, at, about, to may be used:

    FOR IN

    capacity for difficulty in

    excuse for harm in

    gift for hesitation in

    reason for sense in

    talent for skill in

    AT TO

    pleasure at objection to

    amazement at preparation to

    surprise at

    He had difficulty in speaking.

    Imagine his surprise at seeing me. .

    7. an adverbial modifier

    a) of time (after, before, on, upon, since, at, in)

    She hesitated before entering the room.

    On returning home he found a note in his room.

    b) of manner (by, without)

    I did it without thinking.

    You'll achieve a lot by telling the truth.

    c) of attending circumstances

    They danced without speaking.

    I never see asters without remembering her.

    d) of cause (because of, for, from, owing to, for fear of)

    I couldn't speak for laughing.

    He said it for fear of losing her again.

    e) of concession (in spite of)

    In spite of being disturbed late at night, he fell asleep again.

    f) of condition (but for, in case of, without)

    But for meeting her, I shouldn't have become an English teacher.

    In case of being questioned he should tell the truth.

    g) of purpose (for)

    One side of the gallery was used for dancing.


    I. Only the gerund is used (in different functions) after the following verbs:

    to avoid to fancy practise

    to appreciate to forgive to put off

    to admit to imagine to recall

    to celebrate to mention to recollect

    to consider to mind to resent

    to deny to miss to resist

    to enjoy to postpone to risk

    to excuse to feel like to suggest

    to burst out to fall to to finish

    to quit to give up

    to keep on can’t help (stand, face)

    II. Only the infinitive is used after the following verbs:

    to advise

    to forbid

    to permit

    to help

    can’t afford

    III. The gerund and the infinitive are interchangeable (express the same):

    1. as part of a compound aspective predicate after aspective verbs (except the verb to stop). After to stop the gerund is used when it suggests the end of the action
    denoted by the gerund; the infinitive is used as an adverbial modifier
    of purpose.

    Stop smoking!

    He stopped to talk to his friend.

    2. after the verbs to fear, to intend, to neglect, to propose, to attempt,

    III. The gerund and the infinitive express different meanings used



    after the verbs to like, to love, to prefer, to hate, to dread, can’t bear

    the gerund expresses a more general or habitual action:

    I hate interrupting people.

    the infinitive is used mostly with reference to a special concrete occasion:

    I hate to interrupt you, but I have to.

    after to be afraid

    When followed by a gerund (to be afraid of doing smth) this expression shows that there is a possibility of some bad results.

    We walked very carefully along the icy path. We were afraid of falling.

    When followed by an infinitive (to be afraid to so smth) it denotes an intentional action:

    I’m afraid to do something = I don’t want to carry out an action because I’m afraid

    He was afraid to tell his parents about the broken window. (he didn’t want to do it because he knew they would be angry)


    I was afraid to go near the dog because I was afraid of being bitten.

    after the verb to remember

    the gerund expresses a prior action:

    I remember calling on him that day.

    the infinitive expresses a future action:

    Remember to call on him after dinner.

    after the verb to forget

    the gerund shows that a person accomplished an action but forgot about the fact:

    I forgot shutting the window. (Я забыл, что закрыл окно).

    The infinitive shows that the action didn’t take place:

    I forgot to shut the window. (Я забыл закрыть окно).

    after the verb to regret

    the gerund expresses a prior action:

    I regret saying it to him.

    the infinitive expresses a simultaneous action:

    I regret to say but you are not among the invited.

    after the verb to try

    When to try is followed by a gerund it expresses the idea of experiment (попробовать, испытать):

    He hurt his right hand so he tried writing with his left.

    When followed by an infinitive (to try to so smth) it means to make an attempt (стараться):

    Try to write more carefully.

    after the verb to mean

    Means doing expresses the idea of some result:

    I have to start work earlier this week. This will mean getting up earlier.

    To mean to do smth= to intend to do smth

    I meant to ring you up yesterday.

    after the verb to go on

    to go on + gerund suggests the continuation of the action denoted by the gerund and forms part of compound verbal predicate:

    I wouldn't go on thinking about it.

    the infinitive points out a new stage in the sequence of actions:

    He welcomed the new pupils and went on to explain the school regulations.


    Don't forget taking / to take your dictionary with you!

    Leaving it at home could mean to end up / ending up with a bloody nose.

    Larry James explains...

    When you go on a foreign holiday, the first thing you must remember to pack/ packing is your dictionary.

    You could of course stop to buy / buying one at the airport before you get on the plane. But what happens? The assistant says, 'Sorry, we've stopped to sell / selling those now.' No, buy one before you go. It may mean to run / running round town to find just what you want, but it'll be worth it. From the moment you book your holiday, you spend days trying to learn / learning all those little phrases that will make life easy while you're abroad.

    And you have such good intentions! You mean to learn / learning at least five new phrases every day. And that means to set / setting aside time. So you take the book to work to study in your lunch hour and then forget to bring / bringing it home!

    I've just come back from a holiday in Malawi. One day I went to a market and, without a dictionary, I started to talk to a young man selling fish. Unfortunately, although I didn't mean to be / being offensive, I must have said something that annoyed him. I remember to wake / waking up lying on the ground with a bleeding nose.

    If only I had remembered to take /taking my dictionary with me!


    A gerundial complex consists of a noun in the possessive case or a possessive pronoun (the secondary subject) and a gerund (the secondary predicate).

    I hate his bothering me with silly questions. (a direct object)

    The main trouble is her being often ill. (a predicative)

    I don’t like the idea of the boys’ living here with us. (an attribute)

    A gerundial complex therefore can be used in any function in the sentence.

    If the noun denotes a lifeless thing it can’t be used in the possessive case so it is used in the common case.

    I insist on the window being opened.

    In modern English there is a tendency to use the common case even with such nouns which may be used in the possessive case and to use the objective case of personal pronouns. The –ing form in such constructions is considered to be intermediate between the gerund and participle I and is called a half-gerund (or a semi-gerund) and the constructions are called half-gerundial.


    I insist on Tom’s (his) doing it. (a gerundial complex)

    I insist on Tom (him) doing it. (a half-gerundial complex)

    I saw Tom (him) doing it. (a complex object with participle I)

    To distinguish a predicative complex with a half-gerund from a complex object with participle I we must bear in mind that the latter may be used only after the verbs of sense perception.

    Note. A possessive pronoun is not used before the gerund if the actions denoted by the gerund and the predicate are performed by the same person:

    I remember seeing him.

    I remember his seeing me.


    The verbal noun has the same form as the indefinite active gerund but since it’s a noun it differs from the gerund in the peculiarities of use.

    1. It has the plural form:

    Sufferings, goings, comings

    2. It may take either of the articles:

    You’ve provided a good beginning for this story.

    I didn’t like the beginning of the story.

    3. The gerund is modified by an adverb while the verbal noun is modified by an adjective:

    Dancing lightly and riding well were the things that mattered.

    On the way he would do some serious thinking about the future.

    4. The gerund is followed by a direct object while the verbal noun is followed by an of-phrase (a prepositional object):

    I didn’t mind telling you about it.

    She heard only the beating of her heart.

    Participle I

    Its features and forms

    The participle is intermediate between the verb and the adjective and partially between the verb and the adverb.

    1. Like the adjective participle I can function as an attribute to the noun. Participle I in this function corresponds to the Russian причастие:

    The rising sun was hidden by the clouds. (восходящее солнце)

    1. Like the adverb participle I can function as an adverbial modifier corresponding to the Russian деепричастие:

    Having no time I couldn’t get there. (не имея времени)

    Having finished my lessons I went home. (окончив уроки)

    Having slept for two hours he felt rested.

    Having been warned about the bandits, he left his valuables at home.

    1. Like the verb participle I

    1. can take a direct object:

    She sat in the armchair reading a newspaper.

    1. can be modified by an adverb:

    The captain walked up and down looking straight before him.

    1. has voice and tense distinctions.

    The forms of participle I

    Active Passive

    Indefinite running ---------

    sending being sent

    Perfect having run -----------

    having sent having been sent

    Like the infinitive and the gerund the tense distinctions of participle I are relative, not absolute (the indefinite form expresses simultaneity, the perfect form expresses priority).

    Note 1. When used as an adverbial modifier of time Participle I non-perfect denoting short terminative actions (to arrive, to close, to open, to reach, to pass, to see, to think, to come, etc.) can express priority. In these cases the action of the predicate closely follows that of the participle:

    Arriving at the station I called a porter.

    Hearing a noise in the yard, I looked out of the window.

    Entering the room that evening Mary found a letter from her son.

    Taking off our shoes, we tiptoed into the nursery.

    Participle I perfect expresses an action prior to the action of the predicate and functions as an adverbial modifier of reason:

    Having failed twice, he didn't want to try again.

    Having seen the girl long ago, I didn't recognize her.

    Not having seen her for a long time I didn't recognize her.


    Participle I can be used in two syntactic functions:

    1. as an attribute

    In this function single participle I is always used in pre-position to the noun:

    They looked at the flying plane.

    When used in post-position to the noun it is part of an attributive participle phrase:

    The student answering the question is the best in his group.

    In this function it corresponds to the Russian действительное причастие настоящего времени.

    Participle I Indefinite Passive is very seldom used as an attribute.

    Note. Participle I perfect is never used in this function. To express priority an attributive subordinate clause is used:

    The boy who broke the window has left.

    I've just talked to the students who came back from London yesterday.


    I looked at the girl sitting at the window. (a simultaneous action)

    The girl who had been sitting at the window went away. (a prior action) (having sat)

    2. as an adverbial modifier (corresponds to деепричастие)

    All forms are used here.

    1. of time

    Approaching home I saw him.

    Having finished his work he left home.

    In this function Participle I Indefinite Active can be preceded by the conjunctions when or while:

    While reading the text I noticed some mistakes.

    Don't forget articles when speaking English.

    Note. Participle I Indefinite of the verb to be is not used as an adverbial modifier of time. Clauses of the type Когда он был в Лондоне,.., Когда он был ребенком,.. are translated When in London..., When a child.... It means When he was in London,.., When he was a child..

    b) of cause (or reason). All forms of Participle I are used here.

    Having left school at twelve he had no qualifications.

    The most frequently used Non-Perfect Participle I of verbs denoting mental perception and emotions are: knowing, realizing, remembering, hoping, expecting, fearing and also being and having.

    Hoping to meet her, he left the house.

    Being hungry, he rushed to the fridge.

    Having plenty of time we didn't hurry.

    Not knowing where to go I turned back.

    Note. Participle I of the verb to be (being) when used as an adverbial modifier will always be an adverbial modifier of cause.

    Being a stranger in the town, he had to ask the way - As he was a stranger in the town, ...

    c) of manner or attending circumstances. In this function Participle I Indefinite is mostly used.

    She began to walk carefully counting her steps.

    He was silent, looking at his hands.

    d) of unreal comparison (as if; as though)

    She looked at me as though seeing me for the first time.

    He spoke as if translating from a foreign language.


    1. Used as an attribute

    a) in pre-position to the noun a single gerund denotes the function (purpose) of the noun it modifies, while participle I denotes an action fulfilled by the noun:


    a sitting-room a sitting girl

    a swimming pool a swimming man

    a sleeping car a sleeping child

    a skating-rink

    a washing machine

    a looking glass

    b) in post-position to the noun it modifies participle I is never prepositional while the gerund is always preceded by either of or for:

    I don’t see any chance of getting there before sunset. (a gerund)

    There was no reason for telling him about it.

    The house had two windows looking over the street. (participle I)

    2. Used as an adverbial modifier

    a) of time participle I is never prepositional while the gerund always is:

    Closing the door he went downstairs. (participle I) = On closing the door he went downstairs (a gerund).

    Having said it he stood up and went out. = After saying it he stood up and went out.

    Ahello_html_m2e6448f.giffter + a gerund = Participle I there is a short interval between the action denoted perfect by the verbal and the action of the predicate verb

    Ohello_html_m2e6448f.gifn (upon) + a gerund = Participle I the action of the verbal takes place

    indefinite active of terminative verbs immediately after thet of the predicate verb, denoting short actions without any pause

    Ahello_html_m2e6448f.gift, in + a gerund = when, while +Participle I during

    At seeing me there he burst out laughing.

    b) of manner gerund is always found with a preposition (by/without) while participle I is non-prepositional:

    He sat reading a book.

    He left without saying good-bye.

    She warned me by leaving me a message.

    Mind the difference between:

    It is used as an adverbial modifier of reason:

    Not knowing his address he couldn’t write.

    Not being used to such kind of work he soon got tired.

    It is used as an adverbial modifier of manner or condition:

    He left without saying good bye.

    The boys couldn’t leave the school without asking for permission.


    They are used only with the verbs of sense perception. The Complex Object follows the verbs to hear, to see, to watch, to find (=to see), to feel:

    He found Nora reading a novel in their bedroom.

    I saw him crossing the river.

    The Complex Subject with participle I is used with three verbs only - to hear, to see, to find (=to see). The corresponding Russian translation is «видели, как», «слышали, как» + a verb in the imperfective aspect (несовершенный вид).

    A car was heard arriving.

    He was found sleeping.

    Unlike the complex object and the complex subject with the infinitive that express completed actions the complexes with participle I express actions in progress and correspond to the Russian verb in the imperfective aspect:

    We watched him approaching the gate slowly. – Мы наблюдали, как он медленно подходил к калитке.

    We saw him approach the gate and enter the house. – Мы видели, как он подошел к калитке и зашел в дом.


    It has one form. It is always passive in meaning (which makes it identical in meaning to participle I passive). The functions of participle II:

    1. an attribute

    a broken chair, a faded flower, a closed door

    1. a predicative:

    I was greatly frightened.

    You look rested.

    The children were neatly dressed.

    1. Used as an adverbial modifier it is always preceded by the conjunctions when, unless, though, once (как только, уж если):

    When dressed I sat for a while by the window.

    A promise accounts too little unless kept.

    Our feelings once hurt are open to injury.

    Once determined to have a fight Montmorency wouldn’t hesitate.


    1. It is used with the verbs to have and to get and shows that something is done for the benefit of the person denoted by the subject. The subject is not the agent of the action denoted by participle II:

    I want to have my room papered.

    Why don’t you have your hair cut?

    You can get your watch repaired.

    To have one’s hair cut /dyed black/ permed

    picture / photo taken

    dress made

    tooth pulled out / out

    blood-pressure measured

    room papered

    boots cleaned, etc.

    I am not accustomed to having my words doubted.

    May I have a taxi called?

    1. It is used after the verbs of sense perception: to see, to hear, to watch and the verb to wish:

    I heard my name mentioned.

    I want my photograph taken.


    The N.A. construction consists of a noun in the common case or a pronoun in the nominative case and participle I or participle II. Any form of the participles can be used here. In the N.A. construction the participle has a subject of its own (expressed by a noun or a pronoun) different from that of the main sentence. It is always marked by a comma.

    The N.A. construction functions as an adverbial modifier of time, cause, condition, manner or attending circumstances:

    The question being settled, they parted. (an adverbial modifier of time)

    The river having risen at night, the crossing was impossible. (an adverbial modifier of cause)

    Weather permitting, we shall start tomorrow. (an adverbial modifier of condition)

    She quickly went away, John silently following her. (an adverbial modifier of attending circumstances)

    Participle I being can be omitted, then we have the N.A. construction without participle I:

    The lecture over, we left the hall.

    Everybody at home, we sat down to dinner.

    He sat by the fire, pipe in mouth. (note the absence of the articles)

    The N.A. construction may be introduced by the prepositions with or without though the use of the prepositions is optional:

    He sat (with) his arms folded.

    He walked, his head bent.

    She looked even prettier with most of the make-up gone from her young face.

Дата добавления 02.10.2016
Раздел Иностранные языки
Подраздел Другие методич. материалы
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