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primary auxiliary verb

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We have roughly 16 auxiliary verbs in the English language. Three are called primary auxiliaries: to be, to have, and to do. These three words perform special functions.

The verb to be forms the passive voice (The ball was hit by John) and the progressive tense (John was hitting the ball).

The verb to have forms the perfect tenses (I have decided to retire).

The verb to do enables us to negate or to ask questions (He did not write the book, Do you mind?).

Notice that each of these verbs can act as a main verb as well, as in I am happy, He has a lot of money, and He does his own thing.

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