Verbs with '-ing' and 'just done'

Verbs with ‘-ing’ and ‘just done’

Spanish Gerunds (‘-ing’ Verbs)

  • In Spanish, the equivalent to the English ‘-ing’ verb form is known as the gerund (“gerundio” in Spanish). It is used to form continuous tenses or to express an ongoing action.
  • The Spanish gerund is created by dropping the infinitive ending and adding “-ando” for ‘-ar’ verbs and “-iendo” for ‘-er’ and ‘-ir’ verbs. For instance, ‘hablar’ (to talk) becomes ‘hablando’ (talking), ‘comer’ (to eat) becomes ‘comiendo’ (eating), and ‘vivir’ (to live) becomes ‘viviendo’ (living).
  • The gerund form in Spanish is often used with the verb ‘estar’ (to be) to create the present continuous tense, which describes an action that is ongoing at the time of speaking. For example, ‘Estoy hablando’ means ‘I am talking.’
  • Note that there are some irregular gerunds in Spanish, just as there are in English. Some common ones include ‘decir’ (saying), which becomes ‘diciendo,’ and ‘ir’ (going), which becomes ‘yendo.’

Expressing ‘Just Done’

  • The concept of ‘just done’ is expressed in Spanish using the word ‘acabar’ in conjunction with ‘de’ and the infinitive form of the verb. ‘Acabar de’ is translated as ‘just.’ For instance, ‘Acabo de comer’ would mean ‘I just ate’.
  • The phrase ‘acabar de’ is always followed by the infinitive form of the verb, regardless of the subject. For example, ‘Ella acaba de hablar’ means ‘She just spoke.’
  • While ‘acabar de’ expresses an action completed in the very recent past, if you wanted to express a slightly older past action, you would use another verb tense, such as the preterite or the imperfect.

Exam Practice

  • It is imperative to practice and memorize both these structures for a sound understanding of continuous verbs and expressing recent past actions. Remember to also pay attention to verb conjugation and irregular verbs during your revision.