The present work was an analysis of two important English grammatical categories: tense and aspect. I tried to formulate the history of the development of these categories and systematize the knowledge about them and their main elements that are used for expressing tenses and aspects – the Past Tense and Past Participle of the regular and irregular verbs.

Also in this work I indicated the tendency to increasing the number of regular, and, accordingly, the reduction of irregular verbs in Modern English. I also tried to divide the most common patterns of irregular verbs’ conjugation into 13 groups according to their past forms and Participles. The term “aspect” and its peculiarities were described in the last chapter.

Appendixes attached show the frequency of the usage of English verbs and of irregular verbs patterns.

The system of the English verbs has been in existence for centuries and it is still developing now. The number of verbs in English increased by 20 times and it is still growing. Now there are more than million words in English lexis, and the number of verbs is enormous, too. That is why the examination of the system of the verbs is important in modern linguistics.

Appendix 1.

The most common lexical (notional) verbs in Modern English

and the frequency of their usage

according Saakyan [3]

Appendix 2.

List of Irregular verbs

Group 1. Verbs that have the same form in Infinitive, Past Tense and Past Participle.

burst burst burst
cast cast cast
сost сost сost
cut cut cut
hit hit hit
hurt hurt hurt
let let let
put put put
read read read
set set set
shed shed shed
shut shut shut
split split split
spread spread spread
READ:  Peculiarities of Aspect in English

 Group 2. The Past Tense and Past Participle forms are composed with the help of the flexion “-ought”.

bring brought brought
buy bought bought
catch caught caught
fight fought fought
seek sought sought
teach taught taught
think thought thought

 Group 3. The final consonant “-d” in the stem changes into “-t” in both forms.

bend bent bent
lend lent lent
spend spent spent
send sent sent

 Group 4. The root vowel “-i-“ changes into diphthong “-ou-”.

bind bound bound
find found found
grind ground ground
wind wound wound

 Group 5. The root vowel before “-ng” changes into “-u-“.

cling clung clung
dig dug dug
fling flung flung
hang hung hung
sting stung stung
swing swung swung

Group 6. The long [i:] changes into the short [e].

bleed bled bled
breed bred bred
feed fed fed
feel felt felt
flee fled fled
keep kept kept
kneel knelt knelt
lead led led
leave left left
sleep slept slept
speed sped sped
sweep swept swept
weep wept wept

 Group 7. The verbs save their vowel but accept the consonant “-t” at the end of the stem.

burn burnt burnt
deal dealt dealt
dwell dwelt dwelt
hear heard heard
learn learnt learnt
lean leant leant
leap leapt leapt
mean meant meant
smell smelt smelt
spell spelt spelt
spill spilt spilt

 Group 8. The Past Simple and Participle II forms do not obey the principles of the Groups 1-7, but they still coincide.

lose lost lost
meet met met
get got got
have had had
lay laid laid
light lit lit
make made made
pay paid paid
say said said
sell sold sold
tell told told
shine shone shone
shoot Shot shot
sit sat sat
spit spat spat
stand stood stood
stick stuck stuck
strike struck struck
slide slid slid
win won won
READ:  1. Introduction

 Group 9. One of the forms coincides with the infinitive.

become became become
come came come
run ran run
beat beat beaten

Group 10. The root vowels change according to the pattern:

“-i- > -a- > -u-“.

begin began begun
drink drank drunk
spring sprang sprung
ring rang rung
swim swam swum
sing sang sung
sink sank sunk
shrink shrank shrunk
spin span spun

Group 11. In the Past Simple form the verb changes the root vowel. Participle II has “-n-“ at the end of the stem.

bear bore born
blow blew blown
draw drew drown
fly flew flown
grow grew grown
know knew known
saw sawed sawn
see saw seen
shave shaved shaven
show showed shown
sow sowed sown
wear wore worn
throw threw thrown
swell swelled swollen
swear swore sworn

 Group 12. The Past Simple form does not coincide with the infinitive and with the Participle II. Participle II has “-en-“ at the end of the stem; its root vowel coincides with the infinitive’s root vowel.

arise arose arisen
bite bit bitten
break broke broken
choose chose chosen
drive drove driven
eat ate eaten
fall fell fallen
forbid forbade forbidden
forget forgot forgotten
forgive forgave forgiven
freeze froze frozen
give gave given
ride rode ridden
shake shook shaken
speak spoke spoken
strive strove striven
take took taken
wake woke waken
write wrote written

 Group 13. The Past Simple and Participle II forms do not obey the principles of any patterns.

be was been
do did done
go went gone
lie lay lain
READ:  Tense of the English Verbs

Appendix 3.

The division of irregular verbs.

 On the diagrams below we can see the frequency of patterns used for creating the past forms of the irregular verbs. The Groups mentioned are pointed in Appendix 2