Stative Verb


We can define stative verb as “A stative verb is one that describes a state of being. Stative verbs are static and remain unchanged throughout their entire duration.”


Stative verbs are used to express a state rather than an action in the sentence. They express thoughts, relationships, states of being, emotions, senses, and measurements. Generally, we do not use stative verbs with progressive (continuous) tenses. They are used with the simple tenses. Such as:

  • He feels tired today. He has
  • Do you know him? He is a popular writer.
  • My client recognized me when he saw at Red Fort.
  • I promise my wife for a wonderful gift.

List of Stative Verbs

Following is the list of stative verbs which you can use to make sentence with stative verbs:

We can generally categorize stative verbs into four parts, such as:

  • Possession: have, belong, want, own
  • Sense: hear, seem, smell, see
  • Emotion: need, love, want, hate
  • Thought: know, remember, believe

Following are some more stative verbs:

Adore, agree, appear, appreciate, be, belong to, concern, consist of, contain, cost, deny, depend on, deserve, detest, disagree, dislike, doubt, equal, feel, hate, imagine, include, involve, lack, like, loathe, look, matter, mean, measure, mind, owe, possess, promise, realize, recognize, resemble, satisfy, sound, suppose, surprise, taste, think, understand, want, weigh, wish, suspect, forget, prefer, etc.

Examples and Use

Following are the examples showing the use of stative verbs:

  • I see my teacher in the bus but he can’t see me.
  • My friend is seeing We are together for a month.
  • I like to hear
  • I have a car.
  • I am having dinner with my boss.

Some of the verbs work as both, stative and dynamic verbs, such as: be, think, have, see, taste, etc.

For example:

‘Be’ is a stative verb however when used in continuous it becomes dynamic, such as:

  • I am happy. (This sentence means as part of personality. It is example of stative)
  • I am being happy stupid. (Meaning: being happy only for now, not usually. It is example of dynamic)

When ‘think’ is used to show only opinion, it becomes stative; whereas, when it is used as truth, it becomes dynamic.

  • I think that ice-cream is tasty. (stative)
  • What are you thinking about? I am thinking about my exam. (dynamic)

When ‘have’ is used to show possession, it becomes stative and when it is used to show action, it becomes dynamic.

  • I have a bike. (stative)
  • I am having a bath. (dynamic)

When ‘taste’ is used to show certain taste, it becomes stative, and when it is used to show action of tasting, it becomes dynamic.

  • This fruit tastes sweet.
  • My husband is tasting the halwa.

Rules/Tips to be Followed

Following are some rules and tips you should remember while using stative verbs in the sentence:

Stative verbs are verbs that are generally connected with the thinking and opinions. Such as:

  • I don’t know what to do.
  • Do you agree with her?
  • I appreciate her, do you?

They connect with feelings and emotions, such as:

  • I like this breakfast. Who cooked it?
  • What do you want to read?
  • I love my new friends.

The word ‘enjoy’ is an emotion verb however we can use it in the continuous tense:

  • He is enjoying the dance.

Verbs describing the senses (like ‘smell’, ‘see’, ‘taste’, ‘hear’, and ‘feel’) are not used in continuous forms and generally used with ‘can’.

  • I can smell the smoke.
  • I can see everything.

They are used to describe things in the sentence and not actions. Such as:

  • He is reading the news.
  • I am going for morning walk.

Exercises for you

Stative verb exercises given below will help you in analyzing your knowledge about stative verb. Just go through all the details given above about the stative verb and check your skill by doing following exercises for stative verb. We have used stative verbs in the following sentences; you need to check your skill by identifying stative verbs in each sentence:

  1. Do you know the place he lives?
  2. He has breakfast at right time every day.
  3. I feel good about my performance.
  4. He resembles her grandfather.
  5. Do you think they will pass all the exams?
  6. They really appreciate my performance.
  7. I think my father was satisfied with my exam result.
  8. Can you smell the flower?
  9. I still owe a lot of money on my student loans. (deserve, owe, involve)
  10. I have more books than you.

Answers: 1 – know, 2 – has, 3 – feel, 4 – resembles, 5 – think, 6 – appreciate, 7 – satisfied, 8 – smell, 9 – owe, 10 – have

Related Information:

Regular Verb
Irregular Verb
Subject-Verb Agreement
Modal Auxiliary Verbs
Intransitive Verbs
Transitive Verbs
Nonfinite Verb
Finite Verb
Dynamic Verb
Auxiliary Verb
Lexical Verb

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