Present and Past Participles in English Grammar

Present and Past Participles in English Grammar

Present and Past Participles in English Grammar

Present and Past Participles in English Grammar

Present and Past Participles in English Grammar

Present participles

Both present and past participles are also called verbal because, on the one hand, they are used to describe a noun; and on the other hand, they a verb.

Present participles are in fact adjectives that are formed by adding -ing to the end of the verb. The following are present participles:

interesting, amusing, confusing, amazing, boring, exciting, shocking, intriguing, humiliating, surprising, etc.

Note that present participles have an past participles. the following example:

I couldn’t study well due to that .

In the example above, irritating is a as a which describes the noun noise.

The teacher talking to my father is Mr. Smith.

In the previous example, “talking” is the present participle because it describes “the teacher” and it’s formed by adding -ing to the verb “talk”.

Past participles

Past participles are adjectives formed by adding -ed to the end of the verb if it is a regular one. Note that past participles take a in the sentence.

The shocked girl couldn’t utter even one single word.

In this example, “shocked” is the as the verbal adjective that is formed by adding -ed to the verb “shock”, and it describes the girl. Consider the following example with an irregular verb form:

My was aching so badly.

In this example, “broken” is the past participle adjective for the noun “arm” which is formed from the irregular verb “break”.

Present and past participles in participle phrases

You can reduce a clause to a phrase with present or past participles. Pay attention to the following examples:

The white cat drinking milk is my friend’s pet.

the , John turned off the TV and left home.

In the first example above, drinking milk is a that holds the present participle (drinking) + milk. In any , you can see the trace of a , such as which, that, who, etc. but the has been omitted. In the first example, the original and unabridged sentence has been something like this:

The cat that is drinking milk is my friend’s pet.

In the second example, bored with the TV show is the participle phrase including the past participle, bored. Like the first example, in this sentence, too, a clause has been reduced to a phrase a relative pronoun. Pay attention to the unabridged form of the sentence:

John, who was bored with the TV show, turned off the TV and left home.

Watch this video on YouTube.

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14 thoughts on “Present and Past Participles in English Grammar”

    1. “present participles” are formed by adding -ing at the end of the verb. Its role in the sentence is adjective.

    1. “past participles” can be made by adding -ed at the end of the simple form of a regular verb. Clearly, each irregular verb has its own past participle form which definitely does not consist of the verb+ed format.

    1. Participles can also be used to modify the verb phrase of a sentence. In the video it is mentioned that the present participles in a verb phrase forms the progressive tenses like past progressive, and the past participles can be used to form a perfect tense such as past perfect tense.

  1. Past perfect: it modifies noun or noun
    equivalent.(the broken heart)
    Past per. Tense: It indicates the action in past
    time. ( I have broken my leg)

    1. * The first part of your comment should read: “past participle” and NOT past perfect.
      * “I have broken my leg” is in the present perfect tense, and NOT past perfect tense. You need to change to “I had broken my leg” to make it past perfect tense.

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