An ELT Glossary : Performative verbs




Performative verbs are verbs which perform the action they describe as they are uttered. So for example, in a naming ceremony for a ship, by uttering the words I name this ship the Princess Jane, the person carrying out the ceremony actually names the ship. With this use, name is thus a performative verb.

Some other examples :

I suggest that we stop for lunch now.
I promise I'll do it.
OK, I admit it.