Explanations » B1+ Grammar Explanations » Reporting verbs
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Reporting verbs

Reporting verbs are used to report what somebody said, like promise, say, ask, admit, etc. We normally classify these verbs into different groups depending on the structure in which they can be found. In the grammar chart below, you can see the most common reporting verbs and how they are used.

A grammar chart explaining the patterns of reporting verbs, including examples and different structures such as "+ to infinitive," "+ person + to + infinitive," "+ (preposition) + ing," and "+ that + clause.

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In the grammar chart below, you can see the same verbs with example sentences.

A grammar chart providing examples of reporting verbs with different structures, including "+ to infinitive," "+ person + to + infinitive," "+ that + clause," and "+ (preposition) + ing.

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The perfect gerund – regret doing vs regret having done

We use the perfect gerund to indicate that the action expressed by the verb was completed in the past.

  • I regret being married. (=now)
  • I regret having been married (=in the past)

However, it’s often obvious whether the action in the gerund happened in the past or not. In those cases,  we can use the simple gerund or the perfect gerund with little difference in meaning. With the perfect gerund, we emphasise that the action was completed in the past.

  • He admitted stealing the money.
  • He admitted having stolen the money.