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Hello,

Are the following bold words present participles or gerunds ?

- Sam was having a hard time adjusting to the long hours of his new job.

- They found him watching TV downstairs.

- I spent years studying for my post-graduate degree.

- The crowd just sat listening to the music all afternoon.

Last edited by Meriem
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Hi, Meriem.  In contemporary English, the concept of gerund has gradually been replaced by non-finite form of the verb, which includes -ing participle, -ed participle, and infinitive.  When functioning as a noun, the -ing participle is called "gerund.  It may functions as the subject, object, subject complement, object complement and adverbial, etc.

Sam was having a hard time adjusting to the long hours of his new job.

          (adverbial)

They found him watching TV downstairs.

          (object complement)

I spent years studying for my post-graduate degree.

          (adverbial)

The crowd just sat listening to the music all afternoon.

          (adverbial of manner)

@f6pafd posted:

In contemporary English, the concept of gerund has gradually been replaced by non-finite form of the verb, which includes -ing participle, -ed participle, and infinitive.  When functioning as a noun, the -ing participle is called "gerund.  It may functions as the subject, object, subject complement, object complement and adverbial, etc.

Please note that, as written, your explanation above seems to say that the gerund can perform all those functions, which is not true. In none of the sentences above would the V-ing be considered a gerund in traditional grammar.

As I said in my first post, when functioning as a noun, the -ing patprticiple is called "gerund.  The referent of "it" in "It may function as the subject, object...etc." is not "gerund." , but the -ing participle; therefore, I mean the -ing participle may function as the subject, object,....etc.  It is true that none of the sentences given by Meriem  would be considered a gerund in traditional grammar.

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