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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How do I determine the main verb in a sentence? [migrated]

I'm not a native speaker. How do I determine what the main verb is in a sentence like I used to hurt people.
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0answers
23 views

[infinitive]How is it to work as a teacher? vs How is to work as a teacher?

How is it to work as a teacher? vs How is to work as a teacher? I think the first sentence has one superfluous word, 'it'. I sure know 'it' refers to 'to work as a teacher?' Why do you use the first ...
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1answer
41 views

“We have to be hard on you, you have to be cured”

"We have to be hard on you, you have to be cured," is grammatically correct? Shouldn't it be "We have to be hard on you; you have to be cured," as these are two independent clauses. I've seen it in ...
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4answers
2k views

Is there a difference between “way of doing something” and “way to do something”?

Is there a difference between "way of doing something" and "way to do something"? It is on purpose that I did not write "a way of doing something" or "the way of doing something" and "a way to do ...
2
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2answers
56 views

“to require someone to do something” vs “to require that someone do something”

Professor required his students to return their papers typed. vs Professor required that his students return their papers typed. Which of the examples is correct? Do they have ...
2
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1answer
76 views

What does the perfect infinitive mean?

I came across a sentence recently: Before I turn 40, I want to have written a book. Could someone explain to me what does it actually mean? I'd rather say: Before I turn 40, I want to write a book. ...
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1answer
22 views

Infinitive modifier subject or object or depends on context

I gave her medicine to keep from falling sick. Is this sentence right? Intended meaning is that I have a friend who is not feeling well therefore, I gave her medicine so that she will not be ...
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2answers
40 views

What is the meaning of “ I was only to do that”? [closed]

I am a non-native English learner. Does the sentense "I was only to do that" mean "There was nothing I could do"? Gramatically what is "only" here? Is it an adjective or an adverb to modify " be ...
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2answers
78 views

About Infinitive

I know that this sentence is correct: "He is not a man to tell a lie." Is it also correct if I say "He is not a man tell a lie." If it's correct what is the difference between these ...
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3answers
1k views

“For [verb]ing” vs “to [verb]”

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 ...
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2answers
78 views

Why can't I use the word 'to' after the verb 'helped'?

I know it is incorrect to say, "They helped to her" and that it should be, "They helped her", but why is the word "to" not needed? And yet the word to is in this sentence: "They helped to get her ...
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2answers
50 views

Infinitive usage (which sentence is correct)

I am working on the lyrics for one of my songs and english is not my first language. Here's the question - which of these sentences is correct? No thorns to prick your heart No thorns to prick your ...
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0answers
45 views

'that' + (pro)noun + infinitive: what grammar is behind such construct? [duplicate]

While reading a technical book, I stumbled upon the following sentence: It is important [that all Java programmers be fully versed in, and comfortable with, the traditional approach]. For me, ...
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3answers
3k views

“He recommended that they are separated” - is this valid?

I've seen and heard this kind of construction several times now and it always bugs me. When someone recommends something, surely the verb used in the subclause should be infinitive, so: He ...
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6answers
3k views

Are modal verbs finite or non-finite?

According to Oxford Dictionaries Online, finite ... 2 Grammar (of a verb form) having a specific tense, number, and person. non-finite ... Grammar (of a verb form) not limited by tense, ...
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0answers
30 views

Q: some of the profits my business earns from the community **BE** returned to the community. (grammar) [duplicate]

I feel it is important that some of the profits my business earns from the community be returned to the community. Why does the author say "be"? I don't understand usage of grammar in this ...
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4answers
11k views

When should a verb be followed by a gerund instead of an infinitive?

Some verbs are followed by ing, e.g. I enjoy swimming. We can't say I enjoy to swim. Likewise, some verbs are followed by to, e.g. I decided to make a plan. Which particular verbs are followed by ...
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1answer
68 views

Gerund vs infinitive paraphrase

Is there any difference between these two sentences: "The Democrats tend to increase taxes, discouraging rich people from voting for them" "The Democrats tend to increase taxes, which discourages ...
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3answers
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 ...
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1answer
77 views

What comes first—verb or adverb? [duplicate]

Do you say, to effectively communicate or would you say to communicate effectively. As ENL learner I get this confused quite often. Thanks.
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1answer
86 views

Infinitive in news headlines

I'm a little bit confused with understanding news titles. I recently started to read news in English willing to improve my language skills, but there is one thing that I totally can't understand (and ...
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2answers
3k views

How do I identify “infinitive clauses/phrases” and “subjects”?

In sentences such as the following, there is (as I understand it) an infinitive clause and an infinitive phrase. Which part is the infinitive clause and which part is the infinitive phrase? And what ...
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1answer
115 views

Is there a better term for “perfect infinitive”, “perfect participle” or “perfect gerund”?

BACKGROUND There are grammar terms such as 'present perfect' and 'past perfect' as in: She has learned English for 10 years. [present perfect] She had learned English when she was little. ...
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1answer
54 views

Infinitive vs. “ing” + past particle [duplicate]

Among the earliest telescopes were Galilean telescopes, modeled after the simple instruments built by Galileo, the first person having used telescopes to study the stars and planets. I know ...
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4answers
14k views

“Plan to do” vs. “plan on doing”

What are the differences between the following? He is planning to do something. He is planning on doing something. When to use each?
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2answers
147 views

Ellipsis in “can and have occurred”

The side effects can and have occurred. The omitted verb is an infinitive (occur) but the written verb is a past participle (occurred). Is this sentence grammatically correct and suitable for ...
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1answer
118 views

Is the second “to” grammatical in “I plan to help build and then to start”?

I wrote this sentence: I plan to help build a strategic vision for Arabic digital content and then to start implementing that vision. I want to produce value-added information in a specific ...
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2answers
750 views

Do I need to add “to” in every clause in this sentence?

Working in the field helps us to learn how to apply theories to solve real-world problems, to apply […], and to […]. Are the "to" after each comma necessary?
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1answer
194 views

Clauses of purpose: “for + -ing” or "to-infinitive [duplicate]

In the following sentence, how should the clause of purpose be introduced? In addition to normal maintenance, there are additional costs associated with interventions that may be required to ...
3
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1answer
186 views

Split infinitives—did Old English have them?

I've read a few articles as well as questions on this site about splitting infinitives. In the Wikipedia article, it claims: In Old English, infinitives were single words ending in -n or -an ...
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1answer
39 views

Can infinitives serve as direct objects? [duplicate]

In the sentences Jack wants food and Jack wants to eat, it seems like food and to eat both serve as direct objects of the verb wants. Can a verb in the infinitive serve as a direct object in a ...
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2answers
53 views

Word usage of “not to fly” vs “to not fly ” [duplicate]

I often read the phrase "not to" preceding an action, as in "not to run" or "not to swim". It seems awkward. Please explain explain the usage.
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2answers
59 views

What parents enjoy is playing/play? [closed]

I have a question; is it better to say: What parents enjoy doing is playing with their children. or: What parents enjoy is playing with their children. or: What parents enjoy is play ...
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1answer
606 views

Why do these verbs take bare infinitives?

[a] It makes the tree grow. [b] I never heard him speak. I’m wondering why causative and sense verbs (make, hear) license bare infinitives for their complement, instead of taking to infinitives? ...
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0answers
24 views

“Prefer” usage - If the emphasis is on the habit --ing form or to-infinitive? [duplicate]

-ing form : Most people prefer watching a film at the cinema rather than on TV. -to-infinitive form: We prefer to drive during the day whenever we can. Which of the above two sentences ...
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1answer
93 views

To + verb in sentence without any other verb

From time to time I come across a sentence with to + verb, but with no other verb in it. I see it often in news titles. For example: Squall, Tina and Lightning to appear in Final Fantasy Explorers ...
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1answer
892 views

“Heard my mom cry/crying”, “leave the door lock/locked”

Two simple examples: a. I heard my mom cry. b. I heard my mom crying. a. Please leave the door lock always. b. Please leave the door locked always. Which one, a or b, is right?
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8answers
1k views

How to remember the difference between: “Can you try to open” and “Can you try opening”?

I am well aware that a similar question has been asked in the past, namely “Try to save” or “try saving”. However, I am not totally satisfied by the posted answers. My problem is that, every time I ...
2
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1answer
71 views

Using a perfect infinitive construction to express uncertainty

My sentence: " I needed for her to have called me." The only example that I can find is from google books- title: The Ghost of Samuel Cetawayo" with a similar use of the perfect infinitive: "I had ...
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5answers
2k views

“It is to be discussed”, what is the infinitive doing in this sentence?

It is to be discussed. Is be + infinitive forming the future tense here? You are to be dressed and ready by 8:00. I was thinking it's almost commanding (or speaking of a command) but this ...
14
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3answers
17k views

“Can easily be” vs. “can be easily” — what's the difference?

I'm wondering what the difference is between: It can easily be obtained. It can be easily obtained. Also, what's the preferred way to write it? If there is any... I googled for both ...
2
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2answers
82 views

“This video shows a heart transplant take place” or “taking place”?

Which is the correct version of this sentence: This video shows a heart transplant take place. This video shows a heart transplant taking place. I have a hunch that both are correct, ...
4
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5answers
8k 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 ...
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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 ...
4
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3answers
2k views

How to understand “It takes a little bit of getting used to the idea…”?

The following sentence is from a mathematical lecture note here: It takes a little bit of getting used to the idea of a function that cannot actually be evaluated at any specific point, but with ...
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6answers
904 views

Why are present participle and infinitive equally acceptable for some verbs, but not others

This question about "started teaching/to teach" made me realise that even though the present participle and infinitive are both acceptable after "started", that's not the case with other superficially ...
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2answers
205 views

going + ing vs going + infinitive, when use which?

In the middle of a conversation I should use which of the follow sentences: Tomorrow, I'm going climbing. or Tomorrow, I'm going to climb. I did a deep search and I found these similar ...
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2answers
185 views

Why must the infinitive be used after “I am qualified to”?

I am not able to understand why the infinitive must be used after "I am qualified to". For example I am qualified to teach. Does not to play the role of preposition in this sentence? If the ...
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2answers
11k views

“Stop working” vs “stopped to work”

I want to know, is there any difference between "stop + v.(ing)" and "stopped to + v.". These are example sentences. I stop working for a month. vs I stopped to work for a month. I stop watching ...
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1answer
504 views

“I hope I enjoy myself very much” is this correct?

I hope I enjoy myself very much I came across the above expression when I was reading something, the writer wasn't a native English speaker. She was talking about visiting a place she wanted to ...