A gerund is a verbal noun, which is a verb that ends in –ing and used like a noun.
It seems none of them likes my singing. (The word singing is a gerund.)
A gerund often follows a verb, and a preposition does not come between the gerund and the verb.
- They discussed getting married. (Not: They discussed to getting married.)
- I like walking in the rain.
- The dog stopped barking when I gave it a bone.
- He has just finished quarrelling with his wife.
- The prince has consistently denied murdering his wife.
Gerund used as a subject in a sentence.
- Washing his care is something he hates most.
- Watching television to some is a waste of time.
- Attending church is not something the family does often.
- Smoking is bad for your health.
- Working in a foreign country can be very difficult.
- Learning a foreign language can be a real challenge.
- Skipping to her is a better alternative to jogging.
Gerund used as an object in a sentence.
- She prefers any of the household chores to mopping.
- Her sister does not like cooking.
- Her everyday exercise includes deep breathing.
Gerund comes after a preposition
- He is addicted to playing online games.
- His parents were well accustomed to working hard.
- She is very excited about meeting him for the first time.
- Jane is very pleased with getting the desired exam results.
- Many will remember them for winning the first gold medal for the country.
- We apologized for arriving late.
- John has become interested in catching scorpions for fun.
- Jack looks forward to running his own loan shark business.
Gerund comes after conjunctions
- Mr Black usually says a prayer for world peace before going to bed.
- Mrs White still looks quite scared after watching two crocodiles fight.
- I have learned to be careful since knocking my head against the wall.
Gerund that follows an adjective
- The police are still trying to establish a motive for the cold-blooded killing.
- The new stadium has got very bright lighting.
- He gave his son a scolding for getting below ten marks for his math.
Gerund may come before another noun
- The sitting room is where she relaxes.
- It is so much fun to be at the swimming pool.
- Someone took all my gardening tools from my garden.
- One of the folding legs of the ironing board is broken.
- Although he is100 years old, he moves about without the aid of a walking stick.
- He had a frightening dream about a fire-breathing dragon chasing him.
Gerund can be plural countable nouns.
- Airport authority has issued several warnings about pickpocket.
- Last month, the local vicar conducted ten weddings.
- The boy showed me his three drawings of ugly witches riding African elephants.
We can use ‘be used to’ / ‘get used to’ with gerund.
- I was used to watching birds on the hillside, but I never have the time now.
- Sarah is used to donating her blood at the medical centre.
- After his wife died, he had to get used to looking after the kids on his own.
Gerund in a negative statement
- He was frustrated not having enough money to buy her a birthday present.
Phrasal verb + gerund
A phrasal verb consists of a verb and a preposition which together have its own meaning (e.g. cut down = to reduce the amount of something). The following examples show the phrasal verbs and gerunds in bold.
- Julia carried on talking even though no one was listening. (Phrasal verb: carried on)
- Jack keeps on scratching his head and we wonder why.
- Sam gave up driving after the accident.
- He does not know when he will get around to doing the living room.
- We stayed up late watching the movie last night.
Gerund used in other expressions
- It is no use crying over spilt milk.
- This new gadget is for opening canned food.
- Where do you usually go for fishing?
- I must do some ironing tonight.
- Now you regret being so rude to her.
- If only you had stopped talking and listened to your mother.
- We could go on dancing all night.
- She prefers having dinner at home to eating out.
- She thinks my hair needs shampooing.