The Past Participle

The Past Participle :

Participle is a non-finite verb form that can be used in compound forms of the verb or as an adjective.

English has two participle forms.

1. The Past Participle
2. The Present Participle

According to English Grammar, the form of a verb ending in ING is often called Present Participle. When these forms are used like nouns, they are called Verbal Nouns or Gerunds.

Present Participles….Past Participles

1. Seeing….seen
2. Moving….moved
3. Breaking….broken
4. Walking….walked
5. Going….gone
6. Drinking….drunk
7. Making….made
8. Beginning….begun
9. Opening….opened
10. Eating…..eaten

Note :

The Past Participles of regular verbs end in ED just like the past tense. Present Participle and Past Participle are not very good names. It is not correct also. Because both forms can be used to talk about the past, present or future.

Hearing the sound, the man came out.

The word HEARING qualifies the noun MAN as an Adjective does. It is formed from the verb HEAR and governs an object. So, the word HEARING partakes of the nature of both a verb and adjective and is called a participle. A participle is a word which does the function of both a verb and an adjective.

Hearing the sound is a phrase. It is called a Participle Phrase.

Here, it does the work of an adjectival phrase.

Study the following examples of participles.

1. We met a woman, carrying a basket.
2. Ringing the door bell, he asked for admission.
3. The boatman, thinking all was safe, tried to cross the flooded river.
4. Who is the man, talking to Miss Mary?
5. Deeply shocked, I decided never to speak to her again.

Analysis :

Carrying a basket - Participle Phrase.
Carrying - Present participle qualifies "woman"
a basket - object of "carrying"

Ringing the door bell - Participle Phrase.
Ringing - Present participle qualifies "he"
The door bell - object of "ringing"

Thinking – Participle - qualifies "The boat man"
"all was safe" - Noun clause object of "thinking"

talking - present participle - qualifies "the man"

Deeply shocked - (past) participle phrase
shocked - past participle - qualifies "I"
Deeply - adverb - modifies "shocked"

Participles cannot always be used as adjectives before nouns. When a participle is placed before a noun, it expresses some permanent characteristic of the noun. It is more like an adjective than a verb.

The Past Participle

The Past Participle To HOME PAGE

The Grammar Index

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