Regular Verbs in English

A Regular Verb has its base form doesn’t change when we use it in Past Tense or Past Participle. On the other hand, a verb that change its base form is called Irregular Verb. Most of English verbs are regular verbs. They have four different basic forms.

  • Base form: The normal verb we find in dictionary.
  • Verb-s form: The form we use when the verb goes with third singular person or thing in Present Tense.
  • Verb-ed form: When the verb used in Past tense.
  • Verb-ing form: The form when we use in Continuous form.

Even Regular Verbs don’t change their forms, but there are some rules we must understand and learn to memorize how to use it.


Dropping silent “-e” in the end of the verb.

live – living

lue – gluing

arrive – arriving

dance – dancing

bake – baking

hope – hoping

close – closing

refuse – refusing


Adding “-es” to the verbs

For verbs that end with “-s”, “-ss”, “- sh”, “-ch”, “-x”, “-z”, “-o” affix the suffix -es to the end of the verb. For example:

  • to box – box – boxes
  • to catch – catch – catches
  • to kiss – kiss – kisses
  • to watch – watch – watches
  • to wish – wish – wishes
  • to do – do – does


The doubling rule:

When a verb ends with a letter sequence of consonant-vowel-consonant, double the final consonant.

  • If the verb is longer than one syllable, double only if the stress falls on the last syllable.
  • The letters h,w,x,y are never doubled ( fix-fixing).

Example with verb “beg” (b=consonant, e=vowel, g=consonant, stress falls on the last and only syllable /beg/ — double!) :


Change “-y” to “-ies”

For verbs spelled with a final y preceded by a consonant, change the y to an i and then affix the ­-es suffix. For example:

  • to apply – apply – applies
  • to copy – copy – copies
  • to identify – identify – identifies
  • to reply – reply – replies
  • to try – try – tries



Here is a table of some basic usages of Regular Verbs in English.


-s form


past participle

-ing form


call calls called called calling
clean cleans cleaned cleaned cleaning
look looks looked looked looking 1
talk talks talked talked talking 1
end ends ended ended ending 2
wait waits waited waited waiting 2
kiss kisses kissed kissed kissing 3
wash washes washed washed washing 3
live lives lived lived living 4
love loves loved loved loving 4
beg begs begged begged begging 5
sin sins sinned sinned sinning 5
play plays played played playing
stay stays stayed stayed staying
cry cries cried cried crying 6
study studies studied studied studying 6
die dies died died dying
tie ties tied tied tying

Notes - how to use Regular Verbs

  1. Pronunciation differences in past/past participle after /p, s, k, f/ sounds
  2. Pronunciation differences in past/past participle after /t, d/ sounds
  3. Spelling and pronunciation differences in –s form after /s, sh, ch, z/ sounds
  4. Dropping of “silent e” with –ing endings
  5. Doubled consonants after “short” vowel sounds
  6. Spelling differences when “y” is preceded by a consonant