What are simple verbs?


I’m having trouble understanding what “simple verbs” are. In my english book they are described as follows:

Simple verbs

Most technical and scientific texts tend to use simple and active verbs, such as in: The cylinder contains three deciliters of fluid. Hydrogen reacts with oxygen. The earth orbits the sun. These verbs are crucial to understand the logic of the argument and how the two factors relate to each other. The verbs may be technical as such, but their meaning in the context is highly scientific.


How can i easily categorize simple verbs? Do you have any examples?

Many of the verbs that you see in normal communication are simple. There are three types of simple verbs, depending on when an action takes place. The easiest way to pick out a simple verb in the past or present tense is to see a verb by itself.

If a verb does not have a helping verb (such as am, is, are, have, was, etc.) then it is likely to be a simple verb. In addition, if you see a verb that follows will (such as I will read), that is the simple future tense. Please see the following examples:

Past simple tense (notice that the verbs are simple, and are not used in conjunction with other verbs)

  • ran to the park.
  • Mary wanted to go to the supermarket.
  • We traveled to Europe for a month.

Present simple tense (also not used with other verbs)

  • I like to eat bell peppers.
  • They watch the football game together.
  • We talk about the TV episode at work.

Future simple tense (comes after will)

  • You will buy a house in the future, so you should start to save money now.
  • They will be at the school starting at 8 pm, so please be ready for them.
  • We will have to figure out where to buy more wrapping paper for the Christmas holiday.

In each of these examples above, there is one main verb. A sentence with a helping verb means that you no longer have a simple tense:

  • have started my homework.
  • They are swimming in the pool.

For sentences like these, the verbs are not simple.

All State Verbs List in English with Examples!

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