The verb “keep” is a common verb in English.
It is an irregular verb.
Form of irregular verb KEEP
he / she / it keeps
Past participle: kept
Past form: kept
Common meaning of keep
continue to have something.
continue to possess something.
I like this pen. Can I keep it?
Jane didn’t give me back my phone. She kept it.
Customer in bar: Keep the change.
Barman: Thank you very much.
keep + adjective
keep + adjective
Stay in a particular state or condition.
Teacher: Please keep quiet during the exam.
Since the divorce, Mark likes to keep busy.
keep + ING form
keep + ING form of verb
to continue doing something without stopping.
to continue doing something repeatedly.
That girl keeps smiling at him!
I don’t like her but she keeps calling me.
Jane: How was your date last night?
Sarah: It was terrible. He kept asking me questions!
Expressions with “keep”
There are also several expressions and idioms with “keep“. Here are 3 common ones:
- keep someone company
- keep an eye on someone
- keep someone posted
Let’s look at the meaning of these expressions.
keep someone company
to stay with someone so that they are not alone.
Jane is in hospital. I’m going to keep her company.
David: What are you doing?
Sarah: Nothing. I’m bored.
David: Would you like me to keep you company?
If we use a pronoun for the person, we use an object pronoun.
keep an eye on someone
to watch someone carefully.
to stay informed about someone’s behaviour.
Jane: I am going out. Please keep an eye on the baby.
Policeman: Keep an eye on him. He’s going to steal something.
keep someone posted
to inform someone about what is happening in a changing situation.
Manager: Has the customer paid his invoice?
Jane: No not yet and he’s not answering the phone.
Manager: Ok, keep me posted.