Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Are both of these sentences grammatical?

It was starting raining.
He was contemplating creating a problem.

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Both are grammaticaly correct, as evidenced by the fact that you can say “it starts raining” and “he contemplates creating a problem”. The phrases you wrote are just the corresponding progressive tense.

Of course, as a matter of style, it is awkward to have those two -ing forms one right after the other. So, people would usually write it in other ways to avoid this, including “it was starting to rain”.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.