THE VERB IN ME AND NE
All types of verbs which existed in OE (strong\weak) were preserved in ME. Non-finite forms have changed in the direction from nominal to verbal parts of speech. They are no longer decline nor are they agreed with the nouns. The infinitive loses the category of case and acquires a particle “to”. Participle I which has an active meaning and expresses process of doing smth in ME changes its shape (ende-inde-inge). Participle II continued to be used with the prefixes - y.
Changes in various classes of ME verbs.
Strong verbs. The number of basic forms remained the same but due to the reduction of endings we may find homonymy of forms.
Weak verbs. The number of weak verbs grows significantly in ME. Almost all the new born or borrowed verbs became weak. The changes were phonetical. The productive weak type was formed by the of a second class and some verbs of the first class. The endings became ed and de. The irregular verbs still form a separate group, though there were some differences.
The preterite-present verbs were grouped in the same way as in OE except that could function as auxiliaries for the future and subjunctive mood. There were constant migration in these verbs, and then it stopped.
Several new categories developed on the basis of OE verbal phrases. This development gave to analytical forms.
1) the category of voice developed as a result of combination of beon (to be)/ weorpan (to get, become) + P II of transitive verbs – the opposition of (non) passive appeared.
2) the category of order habban + P II of transitive verbs / beon + P II of intransitive - the opposition of perfect /non perfect developed.
3) Future tense forms: scullan/ wiillan + infinitive. The analytical forms of future forms developed - the category of tense became a 3 member opposition.
The verb lost the ending of the infinitive, all the endings of the present tense but 3 person singular. All verb except “to be” lost the destinction between the past tense singular and past tense plural.
Thus the 4 basic forms of strong forms were reduced to 3.The continuous form of the verb developed on the basis of phrasal combination of the verb beon + P I thus a new category developed (cat. of aspect).
Gerund developed in the NE as a result of the verbal noun which ended in –ing and P I.
The Infinitive, Gerund and Participle have developed analytical perfect and passive forms. In addition to that the Infinitive has also developed Continuous forms.