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Participles

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  • Participles are versatile adjectives (sometimes adverbs) formed by adding -ing or -ed to the stem of an infinitive verb. Participles like laughing, breathing, and stunning are present participles, and words like baked, blanketed, and cracked are past participles.

    While there are no irregular present participles, irregular past participles are numerous—for example, eaten, written, sung, hungdone. These are irregular because they don’t end in -ed as most past participles do.

    Participles usually serve as participial adjectives—for example:

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    The future isn’t boring old cardboard cards with old-school photos. [Wired]

    Their boots are cracked and dusty. [Chazz W]

    Baby limbs and identifying bands strewn hither and thither … [The Black Spot Books]

    But they may also be adverbs:

    I ran screaming to my landlady. [Peon Confidential]

    Chest heaving, the roo lay stretched out on the verge stunned, eyes open, incapacitated. [No Fixed Abode]

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