Exploring English HomeParticiples

This section of Exploring English describes English participles.

A participle is a verb form used as a modifier. Participles usually end in '-ing' or '-ed'. The word 'fallen' is a past participle used as an adjective in:

The logger jumped over the fallen log.

Participles can also be used with auxiliary verbs to form compound tenses. The past participles in the next sentences indicate a past action or state:

The log had landed before I arrived

Superman had saved the day!

A present participle indicates an ongoing action or condition:

I am swimming in air.

The sun is shining brightly.

'Speeding' is a present participle used as an adjective in:

Superman caught the speeding train.

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Last Modified April 08, 2003