Types Of Verb

Before talking about tense, which relates the meaning of the verb to our concept of time, we must first give some attention to the different kinds of meaning a verb may have. Basically, a verb may describe an activity (I'm listening to jazz.), an event (I have downloaded a song.) or a state (I am a teacher.)
Verbs that refer to activities and events can be considered dynamic and those referring to a state stative. This is a very important distinction to bear in mind, because dynamic verbs can be used in progressive form (-ing) whereas stative verbs normally disallow the progressive and occur only in the simple form.
Since sometimes the same verb can change from one category to another (e.g. smell, taste, have, etc) it would be more accurate to talk of "action uses of verbs" and "state uses of verbs", but it is convenient to keep to the simpler terms "action verbs" and "state verbs".

DYNAMIC VERBS - "action verbs" (Can be used in simple and progressive form!)
1. Activity verbs:
ask, call, drink, eat, help, learn, listen, play, rain, read, speak, study, work, write, ....
Simple form:
events (past), facts, habits (present)
John wrote an interesting article.
He writes for "The Guardian".
Progressive form:
incomplete events in progress
John is writing an article now.
John was writing when I came.
2. Process verbs:
change, get better/worse, grow, improve, increase, ...
Simple form:
events - completed processes
His English has improved considerably.
Progressive form:
process under way
Her English is getting better and better.
3. Momentary verbs:
hit, jump, knock, nod, tap, ...
Simple form:
single event
He nodded (one movement
of the head).
Progressive form:
He was nodding (repeated movements of the head).
STATIVE VERBS - "state verbs" (Can normally be used in simple form only!)
1. Verbs of perceiving:
feel, hear, see, smell, taste,
(look ="seem",appear, sound, seem)
State use:
The bag smells of leather.
My pulse feels normal.

Action use:
Why are you smelling the bag?
The doctor is feeling my pulse.
2. Verbs referring to a state of mind or feeling:
believe, doubt, forget, hope, imagine, know,
prefer, remember
, suppose, understand, want, wish.
adore, desire, detest, dislike, hate, like, love.
State use:
I hope she'll come soon.        
Do you prefer to eat healthy food or fast food?

I remember telling her not to buy it straight away.
Action use:
We are hoping that she will recover soon. (Present Progressive 2)
More and more people are preferring smaller cars.(Present Progressive 3)
(See The Present.)
3. Verbs referring to a relationship or a state of being:
be, belong to, consist of, contain, cost, depend, deserve, equal, fit, have, include, involve, matter, owe, own, possess, ...                               
State use:
George is a fool!
Jane has a big apartment in



Action use:
Why are you being so foolish today?
Peter is having a drink with John.


State verb - possession Action verb - doing, experiencing
I have an Italian car. I'm having a drink with Judy.
She has beautiful hair. She is having a shower.
We have a bad cold. They are having a chat.
He has very little time for her. Are you having a good time here?
My daughter has a computer.
She is having trouble with her computer. It's not working today.



A JOKE        A JOKEstate verbs
state verbs 2
state verbs 3

State or action verb
State verbs 1
State verbs 2