When you think of the letter I, what springs to mind? Maybe igloos and icicles? When the letter I takes on the verb form, we're met with all kinds of interesting creations, from illuminate, to illustrate, to immortalize.
A good, strong I-verb may be just the ticket if you're trying to jumpstart your writing. In fact, when you pair some of these verbs with these creative writing exercises, not even the sky's the limit. Let's take a look at 50 of the most popular verbs that start with I.
A verb is a word that expresses action or a state of being. In the English language, every word sits in a specific place and plays a specific role in a sentence. As such, verbs typically come after the subject of the sentence and before the object of the sentence.
For example, "Ivy imitates her friends." In this sentence, "Ivy" is the subject, "imitates" is the verb showing action, and "friends" is the object receiving the action of the verb.
We love to idealize our favorite writers. Or is it idolize? Perhaps it's both. Read on to take in some exciting I-verb definitions.
1. Idealize - to regard as more perfect than is true
2. Identify - to determine who or what something is
3. Idle - to spend time doing nothing
4. Idolize - to look up to someone as a hero
5. Ignite - to start something on fire
6. Ignore - to deliberately avoid noticing
7. Illuminate - to light something up
8. Illustrate - to tell a story using drawings or pictures
9. Imagine - to make a mental image of something
10. Imbibe - to consume something, especially alcohol
11. Imbue - to fill someone or something with a particular quality
12. Imitate - to copy or use something as a model
13. Immerse - to put something completely into a liquid
14. Immigrate - to move permanently to a new country
15. Immobilize - to prevent the movement of something
16. Immortalize - to make someone or something that can never die
17. Immunize - to render immune by inoculation
18. Impair - to hinder or weaken something
19. Impart - to make known
20. Impeach - to charge someone in an official position with misconduct
21. Impede - to block something from going forward
22. Impersonate - to mimic the appearance or manner of a person
23. Implant - to insert firmly or deeply
24. Implement - to put something into effect
25. Implicate - to show a connection to a crime
26. Implode - to collapse and burst inward
27. Implore - to beg or plead
28. Imply - to suggest something indirectly
29. Import - to bring goods from one country to be sold in another
30. Impose - to go somewhere you aren't welcome
31. Impress - to strongly affect someone or something
32. Improve - to make someone or something better
33. Incarcerate - to put in jail
34. Incinerate - to burn something until only ashes remain
35. Incite - to rile people up
36. Include - to contain, enclose, or consider as part of a whole
37. Incorporate - to work into something that already exists
38. Increase - to become bigger or greater
39. Indicate - to point towards or show something
40. Indulge - to give into a desire
41. Infect - to contaminate someone or something with a disease
42. Influence - to affect a person or thing
43. Inform - to provide knowledge or information
44. Insert - to put one thing into another
45. Inspire - to influence, motivate, or produce a feeling
46. Interpret - to translate or explain what something means
47. Interrupt - to cause something to stop for a period of time
48. Intrude - to become involved in something where you don't belong
49. Invest - to put valuable resources into something that will provide a personal or financial gain
50. Itch - to scratch an irritating skin sensation
The primary category of verbs is action verbs. This makes sense. Action verbs are also known as dynamic verbs, and they express the action of the sentence, whether that's physical or mental. For example, "Irene indulges in a weekly spa session." Here's a more thorough list of action verb examples.
Another category of verbs is linking verbs. Linking verbs are typically "to be" verbs, as in "am," "is," "are," "was," and "were." They link the subject with more information. For example, "Scott is nasty."
Things get really interesting when students are introduced to irregular verbs. Regular verbs change from present tense to past tense with the simple addition of -ed at the end. For example, "They couldn't influence his thinking, so they influenced his child's thinking."
Irregular verbs, however, live by their own set of rules. In fact, they don't follow more conventional conjugation patterns. Although there are no common irregular verbs that begin with I, here's an example: "I didn't want to keep his gifts, but I kept his sour memories." The only way to familiarize yourself with irregular verbs is to memorize them. Be sure to review this list of irregular verbs to commit some of the most popular ones to memory.
Let's explore some sample sentences with I-verbs hard at work. Click on the link in each sentence to see more example sentences containing the verb in bold.
1. Readers tend to idealize life in a fairy tale.
2. Let's watch the stars illuminate the sky.
3. She likes to imbue her characters with bravery and strength.
4. He loves it when seasoned writers impart their knowledge on him.
5. They're going to implement a "no sugar" rule in their house.
6. They always impose their viewpoints on us.
7. Don't follow any crowds that are trying to incite violence.
8. Every year, they increase their budget for groceries.
9. Let's inspire everyone to higher levels of greatness.
10. We should only invest our time in people who make us feel happy.
With a couple I-verbs in your back pocket, your writing may experience instant intensity. Who knows what heights you can inspire your readers to explore once you illuminate their minds? And don't stop there! You can also dabble in the world of I-adjectives with this list of 20 adjectives that start with the letter I. Happy writing!