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All the English verbs that I can think of, take the same form in the infinitive and in the imperative. For example "to jump" and "Jump."

Is there any English verb for which the infinitive and imperative forms are different?

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  • In English, imperatives have both an active and passive voice form. I take you ask about active voice, correct?
    – J. Taylor
    Feb 11, 2018 at 16:45
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    Yes. The imperative construction is formed from the infinitive verb form in all cases. Except for the auxiliary be, the infinitive verb form is the same as the present tense form in all but the third person singular; be is the only English verb with a special infinitive form. Feb 11, 2018 at 17:32
  • @JohnLawler Except for second person singular - "thou goest" etc?
    – WS2
    Feb 11, 2018 at 18:14
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    An imperative clause uses the plain form of the verb, sometimes called the infinitive. There are no exceptions.
    – BillJ
    Feb 11, 2018 at 18:49

2 Answers 2

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In a comment, John Lawler wrote:

Yes. The imperative construction is formed from the infinitive verb form in all cases. Except for the auxiliary be, the infinitive verb form is the same as the present tense form in all but the third person singular; be is the only English verb with a special infinitive form.

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  • What about the second person singular?
    – WS2
    Feb 12, 2018 at 18:15
  • @WS2 See english.stackexchange.com/a/178585/2085
    – tchrist
    Feb 12, 2018 at 18:31
  • I think we are at cross purposes. What I was referring to was JL's comment that "the infinitive verb form is the same as the present tense in all but the third person singular". I'm just noting that the infinitive differs also from the second person singular - if thou gettest my meaning.
    – WS2
    Feb 12, 2018 at 19:15
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    I am confused. How does the infinitive and imperative form of "be" actually differ ? Please provide examples.
    – loxaxs
    Oct 1, 2018 at 16:02
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We always use the infinitive without to to form the imperative.

However, the structure of the imperative sentence in the passive voice is different from the one in the active voice. Changing the voice, we change the form of the verb.

Compare:

Active voice: Do it now.

Passive voice: Let it be done now.

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