A verbal phrase is a verb form that does not function as the verb of a clause. There are three major types of verbal phrases: Participial phrases – These always function as adjectives. Their verbals are always present participles, always ending in “ing”, or past participles frequently ending in “-d, -ed, -n, -en, or -t”. Participial phrases frequently appear immediately following the noun or pronoun they modify; Gerund phrases – Gerund phrases are built around present participles and they always function as nouns; Infinitive phrases- Infinitive phrases are usually structured around “to” plus the base form of the verb. They can function as nouns, adjectives, or adverbs. When functioning as a noun, an infinitive phrase may appear in almost any noun slot in a sentence, usually as a subject, subject complement, or direct object. Infinitive phrases functioning as adjectives usually appear immediately following the noun or pronoun they modify. Adverbial phrases usually qualify the meaning of the verb.


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Last updated: 12/15/2017
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