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He required that the essay be both brief and cogent.

Is there an issue with the verb "be" in this sentence?

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    No, that is proper usage (and a worthy goal). May 21, 2016 at 15:36
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    – user140086
    May 21, 2016 at 16:04

1 Answer 1

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The "required that" cues the present subjunctive which in English is simply the infinitive form of the verb and is distinguishable from the present tense only in the third person singular.

Example: She required that her son sit and eat his breakfast.

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  • Re: "is distinguishable from the present tense only in the third person singular": And with the verb be (as in the OP's example). Oh, and somewhat subtly, with defective verbs that simply lack plain forms.
    – ruakh
    May 23, 2016 at 6:22

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