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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2answers
940 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 ...
1
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0answers
29 views

What are the grammatical phrases in this sentence?

I'm analyzing this sentence and scanning it for prepositional, appositive and verbal phrases. In the sentence so far as I can tell there is only one prepositional and no appositive and no verbals ...
0
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1answer
70 views

Usage of “to find out” [on hold]

Your father climbed to some rough rocks near the coast to find out that under the rocks, our friend Lake lies severely wounded. Is this usage of "to find something by chance (as a result of ...
2
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1answer
49 views

What's to do? vs. What's to be done?

In order to ask What should be done? or What should we do? using an infinitival clause, you can readily say What's to be done? or What to do?. (1) What's to do? But I've heard (1) used in the ...
0
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0answers
41 views

I don't like [you to go there] [duplicate]

I don’t like you going there. I don’t like you to go there. Like can take both -ing and a to-infinitive as complement. But can the expression that the matrix subject and the subject of ...
6
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2answers
7k 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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0answers
31 views

Having vs To Have [closed]

So I came across a grammar question that I really had no idea how to answer. The question was to pick the best answer for the blank. The question was A: Did you see Mandy's presentation this morning? ...
3
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2answers
151 views

Do the -ing and to-infinitive “verbs” that follow catenative verbs always take the grammatical function of “noun”?

I'm wondering whether or not the verb form that follows a catenative verb has the grammatical function of a noun or of a verb, and whether or not it depends on the first catenative verb. "I like to ...
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2answers
51 views

The meeting IS TO take place at 10 pm [closed]

The meeting is to take place at 10 pm Should "Is to" be mean here as "have to" or "going to"? Another example: Those of you, who sign up are to be commended. This kind of sentences confusing me a ...
0
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1answer
85 views

What’s the difference between “to VERB” and “to be VERBed”?

What is the difference between these two statements: A new version of Java is ready to install. A new version of Java is ready to be installed.
4
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1answer
60 views

Are both of these Raising’s?

[i] Equi Billᵢ wants [[(for) Billᵢ] to leave at noon] [Billᵢ wants [ __ ᵢ to leave at noon]] [ii] Raising [[(For) the casserole] to be done] seems The casserole seems [to be done] ...
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1answer
33 views

Pres. perfect + going to + past infinitive

I have seen the following sentence: For four months now John has been going to have finished his novel by today. I hope I understand it (I assume it says that he has been trying to finish his ...
1
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3answers
65 views

“It takes” + infinitive vs. present participle

Is it grammatically correct to say "It took me five hours travelling to the US"? Most people would say "It took me five hours to travel to the US." I wonder if the infinitive is always the only ...
3
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5answers
76 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 ...
2
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2answers
314 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
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2answers
91 views

What is the function of this “to” here?

Old people did not know enough once, perchance, to fetch fresh fuel to keep the fire a-going; new people put a little dry wood under a pot, and are whirled round the globe with the speed of birds, ...
27
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10answers
41k views

What is the correct way to use infinitive after the verb “help”: with or without “to”?

What is the correct way to use infinitive after the verb "help": with or without "to"? For example: Please, help me to understand this. or: Please, help me understand this.
2
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5answers
417 views

“stop to do something” vs. “continue to do something”

A transcript of a recent speech by Barack Obama contains the following sentence: Boston police, firefighters, and first responders as well as the National Guard responded heroically, and continue ...
5
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4answers
800 views

Catenatives followed by infinitives and gerunds

What is the difference in meaning when the catenative verb “like” is followed by an infinitive, or by a gerund? For example: Do you like ski jumping? vs. Do you like to ski jump? Also, ...
2
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1answer
50 views

A question about “to becoming” [duplicate]

Would this sentence be correct? Being scared is the first step to becoming free. The more I look at it, the less clear it becomes.
2
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1answer
66 views

Is it grammatical to say of some potential meaning that it is “able to be said” or “trying to be said”?

A recent commenter on a recent word-search question nominated a term as “an even better word for what is trying to be said.” This seems to me to attribute intention to something—a ...
11
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2answers
51k views

How to use “to + V-ing”?

I saw some scenarios that used the structure "to + V-ing", such as the following: Looking forward to hearing. Disposed to using few words. I would like to apply what I learned in school to helping ...
0
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0answers
28 views

What part of speech is “to” when attached to an infintive? [duplicate]

For example, in "to see", what part of speech is "to"?
0
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3answers
96 views

Can “may” be an infinitive

I was reading this article http://www.organics.org/8-beers-that-you-should-stop-drinking-immediately/ when I saw Propylene Glycol is controversial, and is said to may be potentially harmful to ...
2
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3answers
2k 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, ...
1
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1answer
82 views

“I let him do it” and “I allow him to do it”, why exactly does one require 'to'?

I let him do it. and I allow him to do it. Why does the latter require to? What are the "rules" of using to with an infinitive? When is it necessary?
0
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2answers
124 views

active voice and passive voice in the infinitive construction

Here are two sentences: That is an interesting question to answer. It is an easy sentence to translate. I am very confused about why we should use the active voice rather than the passive ...
1
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1answer
56 views

negative infinitive: 'not to do something' versus 'to not do something'

Found in the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English under the entry 'to skip something': [transitive] not do something informal to not do something that you usually do or that you should do ...
2
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1answer
685 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 ...
1
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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: ...
2
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1answer
3k 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
659 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, ...
2
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2answers
180 views

what's the meaning when “be” is followed by an infinitive

"If two Weeping Angels were to look at each other at the same time, they would be trapped in stone form until an outside force moves them apart." My questions are about the phrase "were to look": ...
4
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1answer
80 views

subject + verb + infinitive

I am having difficulty with subject + verb + infinitive set-ups, as I discovered with who/whom sentences. I understand who and whom as the subject and object forms. For sentences that I find a little ...
2
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1answer
59 views

How do you explain usage of infinitive in “to hear all these large words, you would think…”?

I stumbled upon this quotation from Thomas Huxley: You have all heard it repeated, I dare say, that men of science work by means of induction and deduction, and that by the help of these ...
32
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8answers
5k 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 ...
4
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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?
1
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3answers
162 views

Is the “sorry to [infinitive] ” structure always grammatical?

I'm sorry to be so late. I'm sorry to hear about your sick mother. I'm sorry to waste your time. I'm sorry to make you feel so sad. I'm sorry to frighten you. I'm sorry to disagree ...
22
votes
7answers
14k views

Order of “not” with infinitive

This is one thing that keeps bugging me, and maybe there's a direct answer. Grammatically, which one is more correct of these two? Does it make a difference? I tried not to do that. I tried ...
2
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2answers
192 views

Reflexive pronouns and understood “to be”

So, I've got a fairly straightforward sentence: Poe did not think himself a writer of inferior material. It is my understanding that "a writer of inferior material" is the object of the ...
11
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4answers
21k views

“I like to do (be) something” vs “I like doing (being) something”

This is what I read in an answer to a previous question: Verbs Followed by Either Gerund or Infinitive Sometimes the meaning changes according to the verb used. <…> (dis)like ...
3
votes
2answers
62 views

stop vs stopped?

what is the difference between; "what if we stop X" and "what if we stopped X" We are trying to write an inspirational statement, not so much a question, to provoke thought around stopping X. For ...
0
votes
3answers
117 views

“I want [pronoun] [adjective]” vs “I want [pronoun] to be [adjective]”

Take these two sentences. 1.I want him dead. 2.I want him to be dead. What is the differences between two sentences? What does the "to be" mean?
4
votes
3answers
148 views

“To not” vs. “not to” [duplicate]

A little bit of context, I read the sentence below after the system - a computer application - has been subject to a certain kind of update: The system will be able to not create a record of that ...
0
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1answer
290 views

verbs not followed by that clauses

Where can I find a list of verbs like 'to want', which must be followed by an infinitive (other verbs by a gerund), but cannot be followed by a that-clause? I got from your website that there are ...
0
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1answer
60 views

For a past situation: simple infinitive or perfect infinitive after “ought to”?

In Michael Vince's New First Certificate Language Practice, page 92, exercise 2, sentence number 10, you are given the sentence: "I thought that you would know better!" which has to be re-written ...
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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), ...
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1answer
57 views

usage of infinitive after feel [duplicate]

What is grammatically wrong with the sentence, "I feel to eat."? After the verb feel, can the infinitive of another verb be used?
5
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3answers
273 views

'Should've seen it glow' or 'should've seen it glowing'?

Which one of the following is the correct one? I should have seen it glow. I should have seen it glowing. Or are both correct? Would you parse them please?
0
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1answer
53 views

Difference between “is to do” and “is doing” [duplicate]

I saw below sentence: Her job is to clean the hall. So can I also say like: Her job is cleaning the hall. It's present participle or gerund? What's the different meaning between these two ...