The Verb To Be

<<Previous By: Richard Blazek, last updated: Friday, May 27, 2005 Next>>

The Full Form


I am, You are, He/She/It is,
We are, You are, They are.


I am not, You are not, He/She/It is not,
We are not, You are not, They are not.


Am I? Are you,? Is he/she/it?
Are we? Are you? Are they?

We use the Full Form in questions, positive short answers, with names and words that end in "s", in formal writing, for emphasis.

  • Are you a student?
  • Yes, I am.
  • James is a teacher. This is my son.
  • Dear Mrs Jones, We are very pleased to inform you ...
  • Jill's mum: Jill is not here. Jill: I am here!

The Short Form


I'm, You're, He's/She's/It's,
We're, You're, They're.


I'm not, You aren't, He/She/It isn't,
We aren't, You aren't, They aren't.


  • Yes, I am.
  • No, I'm not.