Non-Finite Verbs



Non-Finite Verbs :



As we have studied in the earlier classes, a finite verb is one which changes according to the tense and the subject of the sentence.

For Example :

We give money to the poor.

In this sentence, the verb GIVE shows us that action is in the present tense.
Hence it is a finite verb.

We gave money to the poor.
We will give money to the poor.
I bake delicious cakes.

Now, if we change the subject of the sentence to HE, then the verb changes too. He bakes delicious cakes.

Since the verb changed according to the subject of the sentence, this verb too is a finite verb.

Thus, we saw that the finite verb changed according to the tense and the subject of the sentence.

Non-finite verb does not change regardless of the tense or the subject of the sentence.

For Example :

1. Hopping on one foot, he reached the door.

Here the word ‘Hopping’, which is a participle, does not indicate whether the action is in the present, past or future. We have to look at the verb ‘reached’ to know that the action is in the past. If we were to alter the sentence to denote the present tense, we will write it like this.

2. Hopping on one foot, he reaches the door.

We can see that there is no change to the word ‘Hopping’.

1. Hopping on one foot, he will reach the door.
2. Mona will go across the bridge to look at the boats. (future tense)
3. Mona went across the bridge to look at the boats. (past tense)
4. Mona goes across the bridge to look at the boats. (present tense)
5. Mona and Seema go across the bridge to look at the boats. (two subjects)

In these sentences, the words TO LOOK which is an infinitive did not change regardless of the change in the tense of the verb or the number of subjects.

Thus participles (which include gerunds) and infinitives are non-finite verbs.



Non-Finite Verbs



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