Linking Verbs – Examples

Verbs are the set of words we commonly use to describe an action performed by someone or something. They belong to the eight parts of speech and are a core unit of English grammar. They help in making the structure of sentences complete and meaningful.

However, describing action is not the only function of verbs. Verbs are of different types and forms. Each has different purposes and functions that help to form sentences and describe elements in variant ways. One such example is linking verbs. However, linking verbs are a bit complicated and are not like any other usual verb.

Let us discuss some examples to understand better.

What are linking verbs?

Linking verbs are a common type of verbs like action verbs. But, it gets a little tricky when it comes to linking verbs. These are the words that connect the subject of the sentence to the subject complement.

They are not used like any other verb that expresses an action. Instead, they show the connection or link between the subject and the complement that follows it.

It can also be defined as the verbs that connect the subject to the information that extends its description in the sentence. Their main aim is to identify a relationship.

Let us understand with some examples.

  • My dog is huge.
  • The bird is thirsty.
  • He is a doctor.

Here, we see that the verb is connecting the subject to the subject complement or information. They are not used like usual action verbs or any other verbs.

Different types of linking verbs

So, we learned that linking verbs are the words that act as an equal sign between the subject and complement of the sentence.

Well, there are some words that are always acting as linking verbs. They are generally referred to as True linking verbs. And these verbs are the forms of “to be,” “to seem,” and “to become.”

To be: is, was, were, has been, might be, etc.
To seem: seemed, have seemed, seems, has seemed, etc.
To become: had become, have become, become, becomes, etc.

Let us understand with some examples.

To be:

  • The car is big.
  • I am proud of my drawing skills.
  • They are always hungry.

To seem:

  • It seems impossible to complete the assignment.
  • The team seemed very strong.
  • My dogs must have seemed very angry to them.

To become:

  • The problems become worse with economic failure.
  • My dog has become a rowdy one.

So, these are common True linking verbs used in sentences.

Sometimes, linking verbs can be the same as action verbs when it involves sense verbs. Such as smell, look, touch, feel, taste, etc.

They are used as linking verbs because they link the subjects to the added information in the sentence.

  • She looked peaceful after going to the church.
  • The cake smelled so good.
  • I feel terribly sad because of the losses.
  • That woman appears to be familiar.

So, these are the points that will help make correct use of linking verbs. They are not very difficult but are, of course, very different than usual.

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