BE is the most important verb in the English language. It is used as a main verb and as an auxiliary verb , and it is also used in the passive voice. BE is the only English verb that has three conjugations in the simple present (am | are | is). All other verbs have just two conjugations. BE is also the only verb that has two conjugations in the simple past (was | were). All other verbs have only one past tense conjugation.
Here are the conjugations for BE in the simple present.
|3rd person||he, she, it||is||they||are|
Here are conjugations for the verb BE in the simple past.
|3rd person||he, she, it||was||they||were|
The verb BE, when followed by an adjective , is used to describe a person, place, or thing.
|I am tired.||Costa Rica is warm.||The building is tall.|
|She is kind.||The rooms are large.||My ideas are bad.|
|We were late.||Paris was beautiful.||The tea was cold.|
The verb BE can be followed by a noun to identify a person or a relationship.
|I am a lawyer.|
|He is a student.|
|We are friends.|
BE can be followed by a preposition to identify the location of a person or thing.
|person||I am at work.|
|The man is in the car.|
|thing||The keys are by the door.|
|My book was on the table.|
BE can be used with other verbs to create different verb forms.
|BE + present participle||I am working.||present progressive|
|He was running.||past progressive|
|BE + past participle||Films are shown here.||passive voice|
|The cake was eaten.|
|BE + infinitive||I am to leave Friday.|
|She was to call for help.|
The past participle of the verb BE is been. This form is used in perfect aspects .
|I have been here two hours.||present perfect|
|The dog has been barking all night|
|They had been to Paris six times.||past perfect|
|I had been thinking you would win.|
BE is used to talk about the time and the weather.
|What time is it?||It is 8:30.|
|When was the party?||It was at noon.|
|How is the weather?||It is sunny.|
|How was Finland?||It was cold.|