Auxiliary Verbs for Emphasis


When we want to add emphasis or make our sentences stronger or disagree in a strong way, we often use auxiliary verbs. In spoken English, a sentence can get greater emphasis if the auxiliary or modal verb is stressed.


That will be nice. -> That will be nice!

I can’t go with you. -> I can’t go with you!

It tastes delicious. -> It does taste delicious!

The auxiliary do is a marker of emphasis in affirmative sentences like the above one. Emphatic do is used in different contexts to express at least 5 different meanings.

* Note: After emphatic do we always use the base form of the verb

do + base form

does + base form

did + base form

1. Affirmative emphasis of a whole sentence.

Emphatic do often occurs after emphatic adverbs like certainly or really.


I certainly do hope you pass the test.

I really do like that song.

A: Do you remember her name?

B: I certainly do remember her name.

2. Emphasis of a verb used with adverbs of frequency such as never, rarely, seldom, often, always.


The student who took extra classes always did pass his exams.

The horse he bet on usually did win.

The classmates we were waiting for never did arrive.

3. Emphasis of a positive result when we don’t know some information or are in doubt


I’m happy to hear that you do like Mexican food.

(I wasn’t sure if you would like eating Mexican food, but that’s the only food I have and that’s what we’re having for dinner)

I’m glad to hear that you did pass your exam.

(I wasn’t sure you would pass the test because you told me it was going to be very difficult)

4. Affirmative contradiction of a negative statement.


My teacher said that I didn’t turn in my homework, but I did turn it in!

My boyfriend broke up with me because he thinks I don’t love him, but I do love him very much!

5. Contrasting


Even though I don’t like most classical music, I do like Beethoven’s 7th Symphony.

Although I don’t like learning grammar, I do enjoy playing grammar games in class.

I dislike spicy food, but I do like Thai noodles.

Grammar Practice

Level of difficulty: ⭐

 Speaking Practice

Level of difficulty: ⭐⭐

Student A: Choose a card and ask the question.

Student B: Answer the question making emphasis (Use emphatic do)


Question Formation Common mistakes -Be…? Do…? Have…?

Do have difficulties forming questions in English?

I know! Question forms are tricky. Sometimes we need to invert the subject and the verb, other times we need to add an auxiliary verb, and other times we need to invert the subject and the auxiliary.

Here there is a list of the most common English mistakes made by English learners. This list will help you avoid the typical mistakes so you can start speaking more confidently and fluently.

1. Using an auxiliary verb when you don’t need it

Do you are happy?

Are you happy?

Did you be at home last night?

Were you home last night?

Did your brother was hungry?

Was your brother hungry?

Verb be is a very important verb. If verb be is you main verb you don’t need to add an auxiliary verb

Do/Does/Did + verb be NEVER go together

2. NOT using a verb+ing after verb be

Are you study English now?

Are you studying English now?

Is he live in Canada now?

Is he living in Canada now?

Is she lived in England last year?

Was she living in England last year?

Verb be + verbing for present continuous and past continuous

3. NOT using a verb in the base form after do/does/did

Do you playing soccer twice a week?

Do you play soccer twice a week?

Does she usually going to the movies on Fridays?

Does she usually go to the movies on Fridays?

Did she studied English last night?

Did she study last night?

Do/Does/Did + verb in the base form

4. Using the main verb as the auxiliary

Have you a car?

Do you have a car?

Have you any siblings?

Do you have any siblings?

Did you yoga yesterday?

Did you do yoga every day?

Do and have can be both main verbs and auxiliary verbs. Make sure your question has a main or action verb.

5. NOT Using a verb

Do you happy?

Are you happy?

Do you from Australia?

Are you from Australia?

Did you hungry yesterday?

Were you hungry yesterday?

Do you in Canada?

Do you live in Canada?

6. NOT using past participle after have/has

Have you ate Japanese food?

Have you eaten Japanese food?

Has he do his homework yet?

Has he done his homework yet?

Have they work in an office?

Have they worked in an office?

Have/Has + past participle (p.p. or 3rd form)


Questions: Be…? Do…? Have…?