The predicate expresses an action or a state characterizing the subject. The predicate contains the mood and tense components of the predication which are denoted by the finite form of the verb. It depends on the subject for the forms of person and number.
TYPES OF PREDICATE
I. The simple predicate may be expressed by:
1) a finite verb in a synthetical or analytical form (this is simple verbal predicate)
I have been sitting here for 30 minutes.
I was sent in to get my tea.
2) a phraseological equivalent of a finite verb, in this case the predicate is called simplephraseological;
here belong phrases denoting momentaneous action:
have a look
have a smoke
have a talk
give a look
give a laugh
give a cry
take a look
make a move
make a remark
pay a visit
Did you have a sleep?
The man gave him a look and went out.
and phrases denoting various kinds of actions (in most cases they comprise an abstract noun):
change oneís mind
get rid of
get hold of
lose sight of
make fun of
make up oneís mind
make use of
take care of
take part in
Iíve never taken much interest in German songs.
Soon they lost sight of the ship.
II. The compound predicate may be verbal and nominal
1) The compound nominal predicate (CNP) consists of a link verb and a predicative expressed by a nominal element. The link verb expresses the grammatical categories of mood, person, number, tense, aspect, voice. The predicative carries the lexical meaning of the predicate (the state or quality of the subject).
I am a student.
This will be very difficult.
Link verbs, with regard to their meaning fall into 3 groups:
-1. verbs of being: be (also: look, feel, sound, smell, taste).
-2. verbs of becoming: become, grow, get, turn.
-3. verbs of remaining: remain, keep, stay.
All such verbs, when used as link verbs, are to be followed by an adjective, not by an adverb. This is because the word is a complement used to qualify the subject, not to modify the verb.
The predicative may be expressed by:
1) a noun
She is a beauty.
2) an adjective (or an adjective combination)
The problem is difficult.
The matter is difficult to settle.
3) a pronoun
The book is mine.
Who are you?
She was herself again.
4) a numeral
Iíll be twenty-one tomorrow.
Lady is first.
5) an infinitive (infinitive construction)
My plan is to start immediately.
They best thing is for you to join us.
6) a gerund (gerundial construction)
My hobby is fishing.
This is not playing the game.
7) a participle
He looked embarrassed.
It is so disillusioning!
8) a clause
Thatís what I think.
The best thing to do is what your adviser suggests.
2) The compound verbal predicate
A) The compound verbal modal predicate (CVMP) shows whether the action expressed by the non-finite form of the verb is considered possible, obligatory, necessary, desirable, doubtful, etc. It may be expressed by:
- A modal verb + an infinitive
Something must happen.
You neednít bother.
- A modal expression + an infinitive
Some modal expressions:
to be able
to be obliged
to be bound
to be willing
to be anxious
to be capable
to be going
to be sure
to be (un)likely
Iím not going to stand that sort of thing.
Are you willing to prove that?
He is sure to cope with the task.
- A verb with modal meaning + an infinitive
Some verbs with modal meaning: to hope, to expect, to intend, to attempt, to try, to endeavour, to long, to desire, to get to, etc.
He tried to get the unachievable.
B) The compound verbal aspect predicate (CVAP) expresses the beginning, repetition, duration or cessation of an action expressed by the non-finite form of the verb. It consists of a finite verb with an aspective meaning (beginning, repetition, duration, end) + a verbal (infinitive or gerund).
The most common verbs used as the first component in this type of predicate are: begin, start, continue, keep, go on, stop, finish. Here also belong ďwould + infinitiveĒ and ďused to + infinitiveĒ denoting a repeated action in the past.