The Uses and Formation of the English Verb Tenses

THE USES AND FORMATION OF THE ENGLISH VERB TENSES

The Uses of the English Tenses

Type of TenseType of Action Expressed
Simple– actions occurring at regular intervals
– general truths, or situations existing for a period of time
– non-continuous actions
Continuous– continuous, ongoing actions
Perfect– non-continuous actions completed before a certain time
Perfect Continuous– continuous, ongoing actions completed before a certain time

The Formation of the Indicative Mood of the Active Voice

TenseAuxiliaryVerb Form
Simple Presentdo/does *bare infinitive **
Present Continuousam/is/arepresent participle
Present Perfecthave/haspast participle
Present Perfect Continuoushave/has  beenpresent participle
Simple Pastdid *bare infinitive ***
Past Continuouswas/werepresent participle
Past Perfecthadpast participle
Past Perfect Continuoushad beenpresent participle
Simple Futurewill (shall) ****bare infinitive
Future Continuouswill (shall) bepresent participle
Future Perfectwill (shall) havepast participle
Future Perfect Continuouswill (shall) have beenpresent participle

 

The Formation of the Subjunctive Mood of the Active Voice

TenseAuxiliaryVerb Form
Simple Presentdo *bare infinitive
Present Continuousbepresent participle
Present Perfecthavepast participle
Present Perfect Continuoushave beenpresent participle
Simple Pastdid *bare infinitive ***
Past Continuouswerepresent participle
Past Perfecthadpast participle
Past Perfect Continuoushad beenpresent participle

 

The Formation of the Indicative Mood of the Passive Voice

TenseAuxiliaryVerb Form
Simple Presentam/is/arepast participle
Present Continuousam/is/are beingpast participle
Present Perfecthave/has beenpast participle
Present Perfect Continuoushave/has been beingpast participle
Simple Pastwas/werepast participle
Past Continuouswas/were beingpast participle
Past Perfecthad beenpast participle
Past Perfect Continuoushad been beingpast participle
Simple Futurewill (shall) **** bepast participle
Future Continuouswill (shall) be beingpast participle
Future Perfectwill (shall) have beenpast participle
Future Perfect Continuouswill (shall) have been beingpast participle

 

The Formation of the Subjunctive Mood of the Passive Voice

TenseAuxiliaryVerb Form
Simple Presentbepast participle
Present Continuousbe beingpast participle
Present Perfecthave beenpast participle
Present Perfect Continuoushave been beingpast participle
Simple Pastwerepast participle
Past Continuouswere beingpast participle
Past Perfecthad beenpast participle
Past Perfect Continuoushad been beingpast participle

* In the Simple Present and Simple Past tenses of the Active Voice, the auxiliaries are used only for emphasis, and for the formation of questions and negative statements. Auxiliaries are never used with the Simple Present or Simple Past of the verb to be.

** When used without the auxiliary, the third person singular of the Simple Present, in the Indicative Mood of the Active Voice, has the ending s.

*** When used without the auxiliary, the Simple Past form of the verb is used. For regular verbs, and for many irregular verbs, the Simple Past has the same form as the past participle.

**** The other modal auxiliaries couldmaymightmustshould and would form conjugations in the same way as will and shall.

English Grammar Lessons
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