Definition of Verb (with Examples)

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Definition of Verb (with Examples)

Verbs are often described as doing words. A verb usually tells us what action is being performed. For example:

  • He ate the cake.
  • She read the book.
Verbs can express a physical actions, mental actions, or states of being. For example:

Verbs Expressing Physical Actions

Verbs that express physical actions are the ones that spring to mind when most people think about verbs. Such verbs are easy to spot because the action can be easily envisaged. Here are some examples of verbs expressing physical actions:

  • to swim
  • to write
  • to climb
Verbs Expressing Mental Actions

Not all actions are physical. Some are mental. Here are some examples of verbs expressing mental actions:

  • to think
  • to wonder
  • to guess
Verbs Expressing a State of Being

The very act of being (i.e., just existing) is also an action. Below are some examples of verbs that express a state of being. The most common one (in fact, the most common verb of all) is the verb to be.

  • to be
  • to exist
  • to appear

See also:

More about verbs
Glossary of grammatical terms
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