The KISS Printable Books Page
(Code and Color Key)

Distinguishing Finite Verbs from Verbals
Based on "Damon and Pythias,"
from - Golden Deeds: Stories from History Retold for Little Folk
Analysis Key

1. The city {of Syracuse} was once ruled (P) over {by a clever but very cruel 

man} called Dionysius. |

"A clever but very cruel man called Dionysius" does pass the sentence test, but it changes the meaning. The sentence means that the man himself was called Dionysius. Thus "called" is not a finite verb here. [It is a gerundive that modifies "man." "Dionysius" is a retained predicate noun after the passive gerundive.]
2. Perhaps he would not have been so harsh (PA) and cruel (PA) [Adv. to

"not" if he had been able (PA) to trust his people]. |

"He to trust his people" does not pass the sentence test (or the "to" test). Thus "to trust" is not a finite verb. [It is an infinitive, and "people" is its direct object. The infinitive phrase functions as an adverb to the adjective "able."]
3. Pythias begged to be allowed to go and bid his relations {in the country}

farewell, promising to return {at a given time} to suffer the death [Adj. to 

"death" {to which} he had been condemned (P) ]. |

"Pythias to be allowed to go and bid his relations in the country farewell" does not pass the sentence test, so "to be allowed," "to go," and "*to* bid" are not finite verbs. ["Relations" is the indirect object and "farewell" is the direct object of the infinitive "to bid." The infinitives "to go" and "to bid" are retained direct objects of the passive infinitive "to be allowed." The "to be allowed" phrase functions as the direct object of "begged."
     "Pythias promising" and "Pythias to return" both fail the sentence test. ["Promising" is a gerundive that modifies "Pythias," and "to return" is an infinitive that functions as the direct object of "promising.]
     "Pythias to suffer death" fails both the sentence and the "to" tests. ["Death" is the direct object of the infinitive "to suffer." This infinitive phrase functions as an adverb to "to return." Depending on how one looks at it, it would be an adverb of purpose or of result.]
4. Time went on | and the day fixed {for his return} drew near, | but still he 

did not come. |

"The day fixed for his return" does not pass the sentence test, so "fixed" is not a finite verb. [It is a gerundive that modifies "day."]
5. Calling him and Damon {to his side} he entreated them to allow him to 

be a third {in their friendship}. |

"He calling him and Damon to his side" does not pass the sentence test, so it is not a finite verb. [It is a gerundive that modifies "he." "Him" and "Damon" are direct objects of "calling."]
     "Them to allow him...." and "him to be a third ...." pass neither the "to" nor the sentence test so they are not finite verbs. ["Him" is the subject and a "third" is the predicate noun of the infinitive "to be." This infinitive phrase functions as the direct object of the infinitive "to allow," the subject of which is "them." This infinitive phrase functions as the direct object of "entreated."]
6. But a few minutes [NuA] {before the fatal time} Pythias rushed in, | and having

warmly embraced his friend, he went forward to take his place. |

"He having warmly embraced his friend" does not pass the sentence test. ["Having embraced" is a gerundive that modifies "he." "Friend" is the direct object of the gerundive.]
     "He to take his place" fails both the "to" and the sentence tests. Thus "to take" is not a finite verb. [It is an infinitive, with "place" as its direct object. The infinitive phrase functions as an adverb (of purpose) to "went."]