Verbal Nouns for intermediate learners

Sometimes we can change a verb and make it into a noun. One of the most common ways of doing this is adding the suffix -ing. Let's see what verbal nouns are!

"Verbal Nouns" in English Grammar

What Are Verbal Nouns?

A verbal noun is a noun that is formed from a verb but is not considered a verb. It is a noun derived from a verb.

Verbal nouns can have plural forms. They can also come after determiners and adjectives.


Usually, we can form verbal nouns by adding a suffix (most commonly -ing) to the base form of the verb.

verb verbal nouns
Cook cooking
Repeat repetition
Refuse refusal
Decide decision
Sail sailing


A verbal noun that is formed by adding a '-ing' suffix is also called a gerund.

How to Use Verbal Nouns

Like any noun, the verbal noun can have many functions. Here are a few common functions of verbal nouns:

Cooking is fun. (Subject)

I love cooking. (Object)

Please accept my compliments on cooking. (Object of preposition)

One of my hobbies is cooking. (Subject complement)


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