A Participle is a form of a verb. In English there are two participles:
- Present Participle
- Past Participle
We use the participles to help form different verb tenses. For example in this first example we use just the basic verb form known as the infinitive:
In these two examples we have used the two participles (highlighted) to form new verb tenses:
I was walking.
I have walked.
The Present Participle
The present participle is usually made by adding -ing to the end of the infinitive.
We use the present particle to form the continuous tenses:
He is sleeping.
They were laughing.
It can also be used as an adjective or nouns in some cases.
The Past Participle
The past participle is usually made by adding -ed to the infinitive:
The past participle is used to form the perfect tenses:
We have walked these hills many times.
He has slept for 18 hours!
The past participle can also sometimes be used as a noun.
Present Participle in English Grammar – more detail on this verb form.
Past Participles in English Grammar – more detail on this verb form.
Verb Tenses & Forms in English Grammar – the title says it all.