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    #1

    Counting verbs in a verb chain

    I am a little confused as to how to count the number of verbs in a verb chain. Do they become one verb or do they still count as individual verbs?

    Examples.

    I should have given it to you.
    I wish I could find it.

    I am doing an online TEFL course and have been asked to count the verbs in the sentences.

    Many thanks

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    #2

    Re: Counting verbs in a verb chain

    Hi Nic, I'm not a teacher, but I would say that what they're asking is "how many verbs are there?" in order to see that you can correctly discriminate which words are verbs. I don't think it's a trick question where modal verbs and normal verbs combine to be one. (Then again, I've never done TEFL so I could be wrong).

    I should have given it to you. 3
    I wish I could find it. 3

  1. Soup's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Counting verbs in a verb chain

    Should and could are modal verbs, but they are not main verbs. Given is not a verb. It's a past participle:

    1. I should have given it to you.
    should = modal verb
    have given = verb

    2. I wish I could find it.
    wish = verb

    could = modal verb
    find = verb

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    #4

    Re: Counting verbs in a verb chain

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    Given is not a verb. It's a past participle
    Beg your pardon?

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    #5

    Re: Counting verbs in a verb chain

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't a part participle a verb that has been conjugated?
    The verb is "to give". Past it may be, but it's still a verb.

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    #6

    Re: Counting verbs in a verb chain

    Quote Originally Posted by hotmetal View Post
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't a part participle a verb that has been conjugated?
    The verb is "to give". Past it may be, but it's still a verb.
    The verb is have given, present perfect. It's comprised of the verb have + a past participle. Note the tense carrying verb here, have given, had given.

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