Look As A Copular Verb And An Ordinary Verb

Look can mean seem or appear. In this case it is a copular verb and can be followed by adjectives.

  • You look unhappy – what is the matter? (NOT You look unhappily.)

We can use a few noun phrases after look in the same way as adjectives.

  • When she realized what she had done she looked a real fool.
  • The room looks a mess.

Look can be followed by like or as if. Progressive forms are not usually used in this case.

  • It looks like it is going to rain. (NOT It is looking like —)
  • She looks like her mother. (NOT She is looking like —)
  • She looks as if she is dreaming.

Look as an ordinary verb

When look means turn one’s eyes towards, it is used with adverbs, not adjectives.

  • Look carefully. (NOT — careful.)

Before an object, a preposition is necessary (usually at). A preposition is not used when there is no object.

  • Look at him. (NOT Look him.)
  • They were looking at some books.
  • Look carefully – it’s changing colour. (NOT Look at carefully —)

Look after and look for

Look after means take care of; look for means try to find.


  • Could you look after the kids while I go shopping?
  • She spent months looking for her lost dog.

Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I am Manjusha. This is my blog where I give English grammar lessons and worksheets.

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