SERVE – Basic Verbs – Learn English Grammar



wanna speak real English from your first lesson sign up for your free lifetime account at English class 101.com hi everybody my name is Alisha welcome back to know your verbs in this episode we're going to talk about the verb serve let's get started so let's start with the basic definition of this verb the basic definition of to serve is to provide with a service especially food or drinks examples breakfast is served at 8:00 have you been served sir now let's look at the conjugations of this verb present serve serves past served past participle served progressive serving so now let's talk about some additional meanings for this verb in this lesson the first additional meaning for this lesson is to work for or to perform duties especially for the military let's look at some examples she has served as a judge for 10 years so that's she has she that served as a judge for 10 years he is serving two years in a military program so in these examples we're talking about some kind of duty it's often like a public worked like a civic work so that means a government worker military worker maybe like police officer we use serve because it has kind of the feeling of like a social responsibility about it so there's some kind of like community duty that you are performing so in these examples of I included sentences relating to judges and military workers so like I said you could use it for police so like he served as an officer for five years for example so this is some kind of like community service worker we use serve to talk about their work often with a period of time so the second additional meaning is to help achieve something or to have a specific purpose so let's look at some examples this one's kind of an abstract meaning let this accident serve as a warning to you this success should serve as a reminder of what can happen when you work hard so in these cases I've used the verb served before in the first example serve as a warning and in the second example serve as a reminder so that means the subject of the sentence is acting so the subject of the sentence has the purpose of being a warning or has the purpose of being a reminder for something else so in the first example I said let this accident serve as a warning meaning the accident whatever it is should act as a warning for the future so but we use serve to mean act as something in the second example sentence we see the same thing this success should serve as a reminder so meaning this success something successful happen and that should act as a reminder of what can happen so instead of saying act as or that should act as we just use the verb serve so that means it has the purpose of being a reminder so this is quite a broad meaning but you can see how serve means have a purpose or help to achieve something okay let's go to the third meaning the third additional meaning for this verb which is to spend time in prison to spend time in prison we use the verb serve for this examples she served six months in prison for her crimes he's serving three years for breaking and entering so in these example sentences we see the verb serve used before a time period spent in prison so in the first example sentence she served six months that means she spent six months in prison for her crimes so instead of saying she spent baba bhot amount of time in prison we just say she served that's much easier and quicker to say in the second example sentence it's the progressive form he's serving three years which means he is now in prison he's now spending time in prison for breaking and entering in this case so for shows the reason he's in prison so we can use serve to mean spend time in prison okay let's go on to the fourth additional meaning for this verb today so the fourth additional meaning is to start a game especially a sports game of some kind with a ball or something similar to pending on what sport you're playing examples Serena Williams serve the ball hurry up and serve so serving something serving a ball for example is a very common way to begin a match of some kind so in tennis one of the tennis players will serve the ball to start play we see the same thing in volleyball as well so like we were practicing earlier hitting the ball this way or this way to begin kind of that match that individual play so any sport where one team has to initiate the match or initiate the play by striking the ball or striking some you know object like that we can use the verb serve it means to start play by hitting it at the other team usually so to serve interesting so let's continue on to some variations for this verb the first variation is to serve someone right to serve someone right this is an expression that means for someone to get what they deserve and we often use this in negative situations like someone who has done something bad deserves a negative consequence let's look at some examples he lost his job serves him right he stole from the company for years the president was impeached serves him right so you'll notice in both of these examples sentences I used serves him right in the present tense even though these are past tense situations so in the first example sentence I said he lost his job a past tense expression he lost his job and the second sentence the president was impeached past tense as well but we're using serves him right in both cases to mean right now in the present time he is getting what he deserves so in the present as he is in that moment he deserves that consequence so we use the present tense to do that so you will hear this used in present tense actually so sometimes past tense as well but quite commonly in present tense to mean someone got a consequence that they deserved and it's often a negative one the next variation I want to talk about is the expression if memory serves me right if memory serves me right so here actually you'll see serves functions in the same way as we talked about earlier if memory serves me right so meaning if memory has a purpose that is correct it's sort of a strange way to think of it but if memory serves me right means if I remember correctly if I remember correctly this so in other words I think I remember it's this information I think it's this so if my memory is correct this examples of this if memory serves me right this is the 27th episode of this series the barbeque starts at 5:00 if memory serves me right so there's a little bit of uncertainty there like we're not 100% sure that we correct but we're pretty close so if memory serves me right meaning I think my memory is correct I think it's this so you can use this if you're a little unsure it's quite a long phrase but that's what it means so those are a few maybe new expressions or new ways to use the verb serve I hope that you got something new from this lesson of course if you have any questions comments or if you'd like to try to make an example sentence please feel free to do so in the comment section below this video if you like the video please don't forget to give us a thumbs up please subscribe to the channel if you have not already and check us out at English class 101.com for other good English study tools thanks very much for watching this episode of know your verbs and we'll see you again next time bye bye that was me serving a volleyball oh yeah sir this is this is the underhand serve – yeah so if you couldn't do that power tight

21 thoughts on “SERVE – Basic Verbs – Learn English Grammar”

  1. Alisha! I desperatly need your help. I can't find a video on your channel that I watched some time ago. It was something about car/road vocabulary (slang expressions). Please help me out!

  2. Congrats on the video!
    Learning English?
    Irregular Verbs. The Ultimate Guide/ Amazon.
    A book simple in form but rich in content!

  3. Hi alisha.I have a question for this example on the video
    Let this accident serve…
    The word 'serve' isn't that suppose to be serves,is it
    Please tell if that's correct or may be not.sorry asking about grammar😦

  4. At the beginning, you said he's serving as officer 2 years, why don’t you say : he’s been serving as officer for 2 years ? In my mind present progressive is for events happening now and/or for the futur when you’re sure about something will happen. Am I wrong ? I watched the video a second time and I think I found out why. The meaning is: he is now serving 2 years and not he’s serving for 2 years ? The preposition for makes all the difference, sorry to bother you 🙂 ! Speaking to myself could become dangerous lol
    I’m better to stop it now. Have a good one ! Steve

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