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Tense Form of Verbs

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PRESENT PAST FUTURE
clean cleaned will clean
fold folded will fold
ask asked will ask
wash washed will wash
mow mowed will mow
  • In the first column, the verbs are written as if the speaker is doing the action right now.
  • In the second column, the verbs are written as if the speaker had already done them.
  • In the third column, the verbs are written as if the speaker will do them later on.

Here are some sentences using the present, past and future tense of a verb.

PRESENT PAST FUTURE
Mother always bathes the baby in a small tub. Mother bathed the baby in a small tub. Mother will bathe the baby in a small tub.
At the end of the show, the actors bow. At the end of the show, the actors bowed. At the end of the show, the actors will bow.
He apologizes for stepping on my foot. He apologized for stepping on my foot. He will apologize for stepping on my foot.
The mail carrier delivers a package. The mail carrier delivered a package. The mail carrier will deliver a package.
The noise from the fireworks excites the dogs. The noise from the fireworks excited the dogs. The noise from the fireworks will excite the dogs.
Summary

Here are the rules for forming the past, present and future tenses of regular verbs:

  • To refer to actions that occurred in the past, we add -ed to the end of the verb.
  • To refer to actions that are occurring in the present, we use the base form of the verb and don't use any special endings.
  • To refer to actions that will happen in the future, we add the helping verb "will" or "shall" to the present or infinitive tense of the verb. The infinitive is the base of a verb, often preceded by 'to.'

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