I recently noticed that if the first verb of a sentence is past simple, the second verb must be the base form of the verb.

For example:

I made her suffer.

But I saw the following sentence in my book

He walked into the room and stopped.

In the second example stopped is not the base form of the verb. I guess the reason is 'and' in the sentence. But I don't why.

If it's possible for you please share more examples with me. I searched for it but I couldn't find anything.


The second verb must be : to + v1 or v1 + ing or v1 where v1 = base form of the verb.

  • There is no such rule. In your first sentence, the two verbs are related (suffer is what you caused her to do). In the second they simply state one action that happened after another., Nov 15, 2020 at 15:23
  • Why suffered is wrong? Nov 15, 2020 at 15:26
  • 2
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    "Made" in all its tenses is a catenative verb here, requiring an infinitival clause like "suffer" as complement. In your other example, "stopped" is not the complement of "walked", so it is not required to be an infinitival form.
    – BillJ
    Nov 15, 2020 at 16:03
  • You mean if the first verb was catenative the second one must be base form? Nov 15, 2020 at 16:11

2 Answers 2


If one verb is in any way governed by or subordinated to another, the second verb is non-finite:

  • I wish to leave.
  • I must stay.
  • I am singing.
  • He made me stay.

However, if the verbs are joined by a conjunction, or are parallel to each other, no such grammatical link between them exists, and both may be finite and tensed:

  • I came, saw and conquered.
  • He walked into the room and stopped.
  • He neither spoke nor moved.

Your question is based on a misconception.

There is absolutely no rule in the English language saying: if the first verb in a clause is in the simple past, a following verb must be in the root form.

You have extrapolated from a relatively uncommon form to create a non-existent rule. In traditional grammar, “suffer” would be classed as an infinitive. The meaning of your sentence is

I caused her to suffer

In that sentence, it is much clearer that we are dealing with an infinitive.

This blog might help you.

  • I updated my question. Nov 15, 2020 at 15:40
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    My answer remains the same: you are creating a rule that simply does not exist. Nov 15, 2020 at 15:44

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