English Grammar


verbs which have never progressive form

I was surprised with the correction :for several years now Bruno Delavigne has been wanting...I learnt many years ago that certains verbs like believe,dislike,wish,want etc have not any progressive tense;

9 comments

  • [...]The real mystery to me and many others is that a non-progressive verb like 'to want' can be used in any progressive tense at all. And yet, there it is, as idiomatic as can be: "He has been wanting ... (for weeks / months / years )". And yet, that is progressive tense more common than the non-progressive form. The progresive form suggests that the desire has been more frequently and more obsessively on the speaker's mind.[...]
  • Hello Aura,


    Perhaps in very formal or "correct" English we would avoid using the progressive forms of these verbs. However, it is altogether possible to use it in less formal English if we want to focus, as Spoler says, on the frequency of the action or the action itself.


    Sam
  • Well, fortunately I am merely quoting here - which let's me off the hook, because nobody
    can hold me responsible for that, if you know what I mean. But, on the other hand, I really agree with the quotee (the person who explained this grammar case in the first place) - and I think he really has a point here, no matter out which body orifice his statement comes from, it really
    has flesh to it.


    Yes, the progressive form, especially for the present perfect really emphasize that something
    hasn't just happened at some time in the past, but insead it really has had an effect on the speaker's mind, it really has been something that has been on his mind or has been palpable whilst they have done it: "I have been studying English for some years": It has been as an ongoing process, an act which has had an impression on my mind nearly all the time, I have been really occupied with it, quite in contrast to an act which I have done only casually: "I have visited England a couple of times' or "I have read some English books over the years".


    And, it might be surprising as well, but even a verb like “to have” can be in the progressive form.
    Consider: You have had a terrible day at work, a day which was really excrutiating and you have l been suffering: “I've been having a terrible day.” That's an appropriate way to stress the fact that it was a terrible day for you, that it had an impression on your mind. Generally, the progressive form is used to tell something that is annoying.
  • Hello Aura
    You learned it right years ago.
    Quote the whole sentence with context, please! I'm sure "wanting" means here "lacking" and is an adjective.
    Whenever you come in a serious written text across a participle that cannot stem from the verb ("She is gone" or "a supporting actor") you only can use a dictionary. It might be then an adjective or not so common connotation of the verb. So has "have" the connotation of "give birth/bear" and you can say "She's having a baby." But you it's not fine to say "She's having a child" because she's a mother.


    Toodle-oo
  • To emphasize how complicated the issue of verbs v. adjectives is, I put together this wordy little sampler.


    She is missed : missed = looks like a verb in a passive voice construction (now that she is dead) she is missed (by her family and friends). According to Celce-Murcia/Larson-Freeman, "missed" in this context is an adjective because it is grammatically correct to put "very" before "missed". "Very" can only modify adjectives.
    The bus was missed by many people : many people did not get on the buss before it left.
    The bus was missed by many people : many people are sad that the bus is no longer in their lives (maybe it was their favorite bus).
    She is missing : no one can find her. Missing = participial adjective.
    However:
    She is missing a leg : she has one leg instead of two. Missing = continuous form of the verb.
    Missing a leg is a difficulty she has. Missing = gerund (acts as a noun). Can be an actual or a hypothetical situation.
    Missing a leg is a difficulty she hopes (that) she never faces.


    To miss a leg : to miss = infinitive verb. This implies a more hypothetical situation only:
    To miss a leg is a difficulty she hopes (that) she never faces.
    ** To miss a leg is a difficulty she faces.


    "She misses her leg" expresses she is sad that her leg is gone (like the people who miss their favorite bus).
    Therefore, "She misses her sister" but not
    "She is missing her sister" (this is not used in standard contexts).


    I hope this has not given anyone a headache. If it didn't, and you enjoy having headaches, I recommend reading the Grammar Book by Celce-Murcia and Larson-Freeman.
  • When I come late, as as spectator to a running competition with, say 10 legs (rounds), then "I miss a leg", and this is not hypothetical.


    "to have one leg missing" is not hypothetical, because in he sense of "being short of one leg" is a real experience. Once you try to balance on one leg know what I mean. And being short of two legs make the thing even more difficult.


    These things only become hypothetical if you think of them as something that might happen. But that doesn't have to do anything with the grammar or the meaning of the words.


    And, by the way, the subject of adjectives vs. verbs is not that complicated at all. It's not rocket science. It is much easier than it is purported to be.


    A verb in it*s passive form can be construed as an adjective when there are qualities involved, in the case of "missed" the emotional states of people. In the active form there is also a scale of quality: I miss him very much". Hence, the indication whether a verb becomes an adjective in the passive form is alreay contained in the active form.


    Conversely: "I kill him." has an absolute quality. I can only kill him or not - either he is dead or not.
    Having said that, "He is killed" is not a matter of quality, and killed can not be misconstrued as an adjective.
  • From Spoiler:
    Well, fortunately I am merely quoting here - which let's me off the hook, because nobody
    can hold me responsible for that, if you know what I mean. But, on the other hand, I really agree with the quotee (the person who explained this grammar case in the first place) - and I think he really has a point here, no matter out which body orifice his statement comes from, it really
    has flesh to it.


    Yes, the progressive form, especially for the present perfect really emphasize that something
    hasn't just happened at some time in the past, but insead it really has had an effect on the speaker's mind, it really has been something that has been on his mind or has been palpable whilst they have done it: "I have been studying English for some years": It has been as an ongoing process, an act which has had an impression on my mind nearly all the time, I have been really occupied with it, quite in contrast to an act which I have done only casually: "I have visited England a couple of times' or "I have read some English books over the years".


    And, it might be surprising as well, but even a verb like “to have” can be in the progressive form.
    Consider: You have had a terrible day at work, a day which was really excrutiating and you have l been suffering: “I've been having a terrible day.” That's an appropriate way to stress the fact that it was a terrible day for you, that it had an impression on your mind. Generally, the progressive form is used to tell something that is annoying.

     

    From Spoiler:
    When I come late, as as spectator to a running competition with, say 10 legs (rounds), then "I miss a leg", and this is not hypothetical.


    "to have one leg missing" is not hypothetical, because in he sense of "being short of one leg" is a real experience. Once you try to balance on one leg know what I mean. And being short of two legs make the thing even more difficult.


    These things only become hypothetical if you think of them as something that might happen. But that doesn't have to do anything with the grammar or the meaning of the words.


    And, by the way, the subject of adjectives vs. verbs is not that complicated at all. It's not rocket science. It is much easier than it is purported to be.


    A verb in it*s passive form can be construed as an adjective when there are qualities involved, in the case of "missed" the emotional states of people. In the active form there is also a scale of quality: I miss him very much". Hence, the indication whether a verb becomes an adjective in the passive form is alreay contained in the active form.


    Conversely: "I kill him." has an absolute quality. I can only kill him or not - either he is dead or not.
    Having said that, "He is killed" is not a matter of quality, and killed can not be misconstrued as an adjective.

      [bloc
  • The scorpions was at tv this evening with they tube
    "i'm still loving you", still another exception at the rule.
  • This post was deleted by the author 6 years, 4 months ago.


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