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Thursday, 20 September 2012

Irregular verbs: a grammar lesson

Here in Carmine Superiore, summer edges day by day towards autumn. The Virginia creepers are flaming, and we've turned the orto over to broccoli and winter salad. The mother deer I see every day in the woods are starting to wean their young, and the cockerels from Easter are starting to bully me when I come to feed them. Still bright and hot, at least at midday, but today there's a gusty wind that bodes a change in store. 

One of the many things students of English - or indeed any language - find difficult is the irregular verb. Of course, there are many wonderfully simple regular verbs: I love - you love - he loves. But how on earth does one hook on to the irregular verbs? I am - you are - he is are as far away from I be - you be - he bees than one can get. As I have in the past told teenagers in terror over their English exams, you just have to learn them. Learn them by heart along with your compound verbs. You know, insert them into your long-term memory - if you have any memory cells left after the Friday-night binge drinking, the Saturday-night ecstasy and the Sunday night weed.

Today, though, I believe I've come across a new category of verbs that no student of English will find in any grammar book. I've decided to call them the housewife verbs, and they include 'to clean', 'to dust', 'to launder', 'to tidy', etc. What's strange about them is that, if you are a housewife, these have only one person in any tense:

I iron
I have ironed
I ironed
I would have ironed
I did iron
I will iron
I am going to iron 
I am ironing - ironing - ironing...

Know the feeling?










5 comments:

chrysalis said...

I enjoyed reading this........loved the I verbs!

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

I do indeed Louise, especially the ironing. Actually my lovely husband does a lot around the house so I must not complain. :)

Karin said...

Fun post Louise! For myself, let me add one more "I used to iron". Our choice - and it works well for moi!!

Cenerella said...

Oh yes I know. For me it's the same, I clean, I cook ...

Louise | Italy said...

Hi Karen - oh yes - I look forward to one day adding that to my list. :-)

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Irregular verbs: a grammar lesson

Here in Carmine Superiore, summer edges day by day towards autumn. The Virginia creepers are flaming, and we've turned the orto over to broccoli and winter salad. The mother deer I see every day in the woods are starting to wean their young, and the cockerels from Easter are starting to bully me when I come to feed them. Still bright and hot, at least at midday, but today there's a gusty wind that bodes a change in store. 

One of the many things students of English - or indeed any language - find difficult is the irregular verb. Of course, there are many wonderfully simple regular verbs: I love - you love - he loves. But how on earth does one hook on to the irregular verbs? I am - you are - he is are as far away from I be - you be - he bees than one can get. As I have in the past told teenagers in terror over their English exams, you just have to learn them. Learn them by heart along with your compound verbs. You know, insert them into your long-term memory - if you have any memory cells left after the Friday-night binge drinking, the Saturday-night ecstasy and the Sunday night weed.

Today, though, I believe I've come across a new category of verbs that no student of English will find in any grammar book. I've decided to call them the housewife verbs, and they include 'to clean', 'to dust', 'to launder', 'to tidy', etc. What's strange about them is that, if you are a housewife, these have only one person in any tense:

I iron
I have ironed
I ironed
I would have ironed
I did iron
I will iron
I am going to iron 
I am ironing - ironing - ironing...

Know the feeling?










5 comments:

chrysalis said...

I enjoyed reading this........loved the I verbs!

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

I do indeed Louise, especially the ironing. Actually my lovely husband does a lot around the house so I must not complain. :)

Karin said...

Fun post Louise! For myself, let me add one more "I used to iron". Our choice - and it works well for moi!!

Cenerella said...

Oh yes I know. For me it's the same, I clean, I cook ...

Louise | Italy said...

Hi Karen - oh yes - I look forward to one day adding that to my list. :-)