Questions about verbs in their basic (unmarked) forms, such as “be”, “do”, “have”, or “sit”, sometimes introduced by the particle “to” and other times used by itself.

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-2
votes
2answers
233 views

Ambiguities and use of infinite and “-ing” form [closed]

I was looking for videos on YouTube, in my (almost) daily exercise to attempt improving my understanding of the spoken English, when I settled for a video entitled: "Why you will fail to have a great ...
-2
votes
1answer
1k views

When do we use “to” as an infinitive marker? [closed]

In these two sentences: I look forward to get. I look forward to getting it. Why is the first sentence incorrect? When do we use to as an infinitive marker?
2
votes
2answers
516 views

Can all transitive verbs take to-infinitive clauses?

Yet it would be your duty to bear it, if you could not avoid it: it is weak and silly to say you cannot bear what it is your fate to be required to bear. — Jane Eyre It seems ‘your fate to be ...
0
votes
1answer
3k views

“For clarity” vs. “To make clear” [closed]

Compare: "He modified the sentence for clarity." vs "He modified the sentence to make it clear." Any difference here?
-2
votes
1answer
68 views

“Some things will be known, but others will not”, or “… will not be”?

Which is the correct sentence? Some things will be known, but others will not. Some things will be known, but others will not be.
0
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is a gerund used after the verb “confess to”

A simple form of the verb is often used after to, but sometimes the simple form is replaced by a gerund. For example: He confessed to having a secret admiration for his opponent. Edwards ...
3
votes
5answers
6k views

When is “to” a preposition and when the infinitive marker?

I want to see you. I look forward to seeing you. How can one say "to" in the first sentence is an infinitive marker and in the second sentence a preposition when we are given just the ...
1
vote
2answers
608 views

the best thing to do is (to) concentrate on

The best thing to do is to concentrate on something else. I've known in the sentence like that 'to' should be omitted. So, I wonder if the sentence is grammatical. *The source of the information ...
32
votes
8answers
6k views

What is the infinitive of “can”?

Like the title says: I don't think "to can" is right :) I mean "can" as in to be able to. I'm aware of other meanings. I can't find the answer here. (There's What is an "infinitive"? which ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

“to further assist [you]” — Split infinitive or fixed VP?

From a descriptive standpoint (and the problem that English has at least two words in an infinitive), I understand why the split infinitive is becoming more acceptable, but is there any other excuse ...
3
votes
5answers
772 views

Infinitive vs. present participle (time relations)

I was told that one of the following refers to the past and the other to the future. I cannot decide which is which and would appreciate it if someone could explain the difference between these ...
-1
votes
2answers
398 views

“I am full to die.” — Is this sentence correct? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “I am angry to die” or “I am angry to death” I am full to die. I meant to say, "I might die because I am full." Is this a correct expression?
0
votes
2answers
7k views

Is it “What should he have done?” or “had he done”?

What should he have done? What should he had done? Could you tell me which one is correct? (If any.)
0
votes
3answers
270 views

“Attempts to acquaint” vs. “attempts at acquainting”

The research study is an eye-opener and attempts to acquaint/attempts at acquainting us with the problems of poor nations. For me, attempts to acquaint sounds more apt. But I am not sure ...
0
votes
1answer
792 views

“Enables you to quickly and easily identify” vs. “enables you to identify quickly and easily” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are split infinitives grammatically incorrect, or are they valid constructs? I'm currently having a bit of a dispute and would appreciate your help please. Which one is ...
-1
votes
2answers
1k views

“Feel committed to [gerund/infinitive]”

Does "feel committed to" require an infinitive or gerund complement? For example, which of the following is grammatical? I feel committed to following up on that. I feel committed to follow ...
2
votes
1answer
411 views

Is it customary or grammatical to drop ‘to’ in “I’m not going to go look for it”?

There was a scene a thirty-something wife refuses to go looking for the wedding ring her husband lost in a courtyard when she was asked by her husband over the phone, in the fiction titled “The Lost ...
3
votes
1answer
760 views

“Heard me [infinitive]” vs. “heard me [present participle]”

"Heard me [infinitive]" vs. "heard me [present participle]" At that time, you wouldn't have heard me talk about it. At that time, you wouldn't have heard me talking about it. At ...
2
votes
2answers
344 views

Can we use to-infinitive after 'have trouble'?

Given the example: I have trouble speaking English. Can we use both present participle (speaking) and to-infinitive (to speak) after have trouble? If both are allowed, do the two have the same ...
1
vote
1answer
108 views

Retire Vs Retirement

I am confused between the two: My father is due to retire/retirement in a few months and is restless. According to my understanding, retire sounds more appropriate. But I am not sure. Could ...
2
votes
1answer
259 views

Correct usage of infinitives

I am not sure about the usage of infinitives in this sentence: Finally, one of the accused confessed to have forged the director's signature on the report. Could anyone explain correct usage? ...
4
votes
5answers
2k views

“How best to handle” vs. “how to best handle”

Are there rules on the placement of 'best'? They are deciding how to best handle the matter. They are deciding how best to handle the matter. Is one of them wrong?
3
votes
1answer
853 views

Usage of infinitives in this sentence

In my academics I learned that we use infinitives (to + verb 1st form). So I was surprised when someone told me this sentence is incorrect. I am not able to figure it out why this sentence is ...
6
votes
1answer
258 views

Do I need a “to” for a second infinitive in a sentence?

It was common practice to first test and execute a program's source code by hand before using a computer. It was common practice to first test and to execute a program's source code by hand ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

in order to [gerund] or [infinitive]?

There are few questions and answer on the choice of gerund versus infinitive. From what I understand, when conveying a purpose the infinitive should be used: I use my key in order to open the ...
-2
votes
2answers
320 views

Where to place the word “easily”? [closed]

Where should I place the word easily — before or after edit and share your bookmarks? Do you want to edit and share your bookmarks easily? or Do you want to easily edit and share your ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What do you call “to be to” constructions and are they proper/good English?

Consider the following examples: You have to be really patient if you are to go shopping in the afternoon. It must be active if it is to record the film. What is the construction in bold ...
0
votes
3answers
2k views

Why “should be doing” and not just “should do” in the following sentences?

What is the difference between "should X" and "should be Xing" in the following contexts? Or are they interchangeable? 10 Things you should do to improve the health of your hair. 10 Things ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Infinitive or Gerund for celebration of an event?

Which of the following sentences would be correct in a baby shower invitation. My grandparents are looking forward to celebrate my arrival in February. My grandparents are looking forward to ...
1
vote
0answers
248 views

With “to+infinitive” & without it [closed]

I am having problems writing sentences of the pattern "to + infinitive". Long ago I heard that in a sentence there should not be two verbs, but I feel if I write it as below, then that rule is ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

“To be” or just “be”

Which of these two are more correct? 1) When clicking the Edit customer button, I would expect the changes be transferred to the edit view. or 2) When clicking the Edit customer button, I ...
2
votes
1answer
5k views

Help + Noun + Gerund or Infinitive

Help my sister peel oranges. Help my sister to peel oranges. Help my sister peeling oranges. Help my sister with peeling oranges. Which of the above is/are correct, and why are the others ...
1
vote
1answer
628 views

Under what circumstances can the word “be” be used directly without any change? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should I use the subjunctive mood? 2 examples first: 1.It is announced that the accounting class of the 3rd and 4th hours on the morning of this Wednesday be ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Causative verb using have/has

I can understand the causative form (quite less frequently, we simply say causal verb) with make and get but when used with have/has, it sometimes makes me think differently. Of course, I can ...
4
votes
2answers
725 views

The choice between the gerund and the infinitive in a certain construction

I am pretty much sure that for native speakers the issue I am going to bring up might look as an uncalled question as they can easily figure out which form of a verbal part of speech should be used, ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Usage of “to be done” [closed]

The following is a transcript of the well-known recorded lecture by Prof. Michael Sandel of Harvard University (the cited portion starts at 43:36): The only argument this painter makes is that the ...
5
votes
2answers
165 views

Should “portray” be paired with “to be”?

Is it acceptable to pair "portray" with "to be"? As in The novel portrays life to be a... Would it be better to use as?
-1
votes
2answers
300 views

“how to not give up” or “how not to give up” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are split infinitives grammatically incorrect, or are they valid constructs? Order of “not” with infinitive Suppose I want to tell someone that I want to ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

On the difference between “noun + infinitive” and “noun + present participle”

Infinitive and present participle can be used to modify the noun: Infinitive: I had no time to read those books. Present participle: There should be a law banning abortion. In (1), ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Help identifying an error type “tried to help me learning”

I have a friend from Russia who is trying to learn English and recently used the sentence "He tried to help me learning..." (implied: the English language) It is obviously wrong and I corrected it ...
1
vote
3answers
2k views

“He has to do it. Hasn't he (to)?”

He has to do it. Hasn't he (to)? Is the 'to' correct/ incorrect/ unnecessary? Is that a case of an infinitive in interrogative tail (question tag)?
1
vote
3answers
604 views

“thanks to (command)”

A friend who works in business says that she has been hearing a lot of polite commands worded as e.g. "thanks to ask any questions at the end of the presentation" (she has also seen this written a few ...
-1
votes
1answer
14k views

“Prefer to do something” vs. “prefer doing something” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should a verb be followed by a gerund instead of an infinitive? What's the difference between the two: What materials do they prefer working with? What ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Ambiguous use of infinitive after “It's needed”

After writing this sentence, I found myself thinking that its meaning may be a little confusing to other people: It’s needed to make clear some issues regarding absences. I used the phrase to ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

“Ambitious to [infinitive]” vs. “ambitious about [gerund]”

What is the correct preposition to use with ambitious? I am ambitious to achieve success. I am ambitious about achieving success.
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Difference between 'decided on' and 'decided to'?

Examples: I have decided on a blue carpet for the bedroom. I have decided to emigrate to Australia. What exactly is the difference between "decided on" and "decided to"? Is the usage simply based on ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Which of these sentences is correctly written?

Someone edited my message on StackOverflow, but it really bugs me out. I'm not sure what's wrong with it: As you see, the bigger the circle becomes, the more vertices I need for hiding the straight ...
1
vote
4answers
1k views

“I'm not being” or “I'm not been”?

I'm not been able to make up my mind or I'm not being able to make up my mind? Which one is the correct sentence? Why is it correct and why is the other one incorrect? Edit 10/09/2012: ...
4
votes
1answer
502 views

Is using split infinitive allowed in formal English? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are split infinitives grammatically incorrect, or are they valid constructs? Is it allowed to use split infinitives in formal English? I look into Wikipedia but it is ...
4
votes
1answer
877 views

“Help rule out” vs. “help to rule out” [duplicate]

Duplicate of: What is the correct way to use infinitive after the verb “help”: with or without “to”? “Could help avoid” vs. “could help to avoid” “Helping you do ...