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    Cool Gerund and participle

    Can someone tell me how can I distinguish between gerunds and participiples since they are very similar.

  2. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970

    Re: Gerund and participle

    Gerunds function as objects and subjects. If a word ending in -ing doesn't function as an object or as a subject, then it's a present participle. Here's a trick: First look for the subject and the object(s), if one of those words ends in -ing, then you're dealing with a gerund; if none of those words end in -ing, then you're dealing with a present participle.

    Subject: Running is fun.
    Object of a Verb: I like running.
    Object of a Preposition: About running a company, do you know how?

    Note, A gerund can have its own object:
    Running a company is difficult.

    Present Participle
    Part of a Verb: Max is running right now; Max has been running for years.
    Adjective: Max is a running man. (Test: What kind of man? A running man.)

    Here's how to tell whether the -ing word is a gerund or a present participle in the following nominal contexts:

    Running a company (Gerund + its object)
    a running man (Present Participle, Adjective + noun)

    The adjective comes between the article ('a') and the noun ('man'), whereas the gerund comes before the article and the noun ('a company').

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