Note: Not Everyone Considers This To Be Its Own Part of Speech Verbals
XI. Verbals • Verbals are words made from verbs that function as other parts of speech. • Verbals can be participles. • A participle is a verb form used as an adjective. • Remember that verbs can have a past, present, or perfect participle form. • Participles can be used alone or as part of participial phrases, which include the participle, its object or complement, and any modifiers.
Participle Examples A sizzling piece of steak tempts any hungry man. (present participle alone) Sizzling on its plate, the sirloin beckoned to be consumed. (present participle in phrase) A seasoned cut of sirloin provides the perfect summer meal. (past participle alone) Seasoned with Old Bay and pepper, the cut of mean emanated flavor. (past participle in phrase) The talented chef lit the grill for his marinating steak. (present participle alone) Having marinated for hours, the steak appeared tender and juicy. (perfect participle in phrase)
PracticeUnderline the participial phrase in each sentence. Then decide whether it is present, past, or perfect tense. The best chefs, having studied the art of butchery, know where to harvest the best beef from a cow. Cut from the short loin of a cow, the porterhouse offers the richest flavor. The rear end of a cow, packed with juicy fat, provides bottom round for roast beef. Butchers utilize the breast of a cow for ground beef, constituting the majority of hamburgers in America.
Participles (cont.) 4. Participles are commonly misused. A dangling participle does not appear to modify any word in a sentence. A misplaced participle seems to modify the wrong word. The hungry student gazed upon the t-bone steak drooling at the mouth. (misplaced) Having burned it on both sides, the chef felt disappointed. (dangling) Covered in a spicy seasoning blend, the chef placed the steak on the grill. (misplaced) Having been eaten by the hungry customer, the chef threw the bone to his dog. (dangling)
XI. Verbals (continued) • Verbals can be gerunds. • A gerund is a verb form ending in –ing used as a noun. • Gerunds, like participles, can be used in phrases. • Gerunds can be used as subjects, objects, or appositives. Many men in America relish the act of eating. (as object) Devouring delicious pork has become a popular choice. (as subject) Many do not realize the abundance of pig parts fit for cooking in a variety of ways. (as object) The idea behind a brine, soaking pork in sugar and salt, is to enrich the flavor of the meat. (as appositive)
Note: Remember: the same word can be used as a participle (verb used as adjective) or as a gerund (verb used as a noun) Cooking Bacon in the morning causes the house to emanate with aroma. (as gerund) Thecooking bacon began to burn on the skillet. (as participle)
PracticeUnderline the verbal or verbal phrase in each sentence. Then, decide whether it is a gerund or a participle. Though many consider pigs dirty, butchering a pig yields many flavorful cuts of meat. Used for lunchmeat ham, the pig’s rear end offers fatty, flavorful flesh. Pig’s stomachs, salted and smoked, produce crispy bacon. Carnivores everywhere enjoy devouring succulent bacon.
XI. Verbals (cont.) D. Verbals can be infinitives. 1. An infinitive is a verb form preceded by the word “to” that is used as a noun, adjective, or adverb. 2. Infinitives can be used on their own or as part of phrases. 3. Infinitives can be used as subjects, complements, objects, adjectives, adverbs, or appositives. (yikes!)
Infinitive Examples To eat crabs gives many Marylanders pleasure. (as subject) Fishermen now struggle to catch enough crabs. (as object) The primary task of environmentalists in Maryland is to preserve the crab population. (as complement) Their goal, to restore the crab population, requires a great deal of work. (as appositive) In the summer, my family visits the Wye River to catch crabs. (as adverb) There are fewer crabs to catch than ever before. (as adjective)
Infinitives (cont.) 4. Do not “split” infinitives. This refers to placing an adverb between the word “to” and the verb. For example: All-U-Can-Eat restaurants allow customers to joyfully eat unlimited crabs. Many kindly offer customers the chance to continuously consumesteamed shrimp as well.
PracticeIdentify the infinitive phrase in each sentence. Then identify whether it is being used as a subject, object, complement, appositive, adjective, or adverb Everyone sat around the picnic table to pick crabs. People from outside of Maryland often must learn to pick crabs appropriately. If you get the chance to eat snow crab, I highly encourage it. To catch snowcrabs proves a difficult and challenging lifestyle. Snowcrab fishermen must travel to the far reaches of Earth to find the elusive creatures. Their life choice, to spend many cold nights on the arctic sea, is confusing to many people. One day, my hope is to try a fresh snow crab.