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  1. #1
    joham is offline Key Member
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    Default to buy/to be bought

    I'm going to the supermarket. Do you have anything _____ (to buy, to be bought)?

    Do both phrase work well? Which sounds more natural to native ears?

    Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
    Ann1977 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: to buy/to be bought

    Quote Originally Posted by joham View Post
    I'm going to the supermarket. Do you have anything _____ (to buy, to be bought)?

    Do both phrase work well? Which sounds more natural to native ears?

    Thank you in advance.
    I think they both sound strange. We wouldn't think of using "do you have anything" (especially the "have") as a way to refer to something we don't have, really.

    Even if you use it to mean "have in mind," the passive contruction of "to be bought" is odd in this context.

    "Do you have anything to buy?" might possibly be said, but the meaning doesn't fit the context here, where the buyer is not even going to the store.

    If we want to express this thought, I think we'd say:

    "I'm going to the supermarket. Do you want me to get you anything?"

    - Is there anything I can get for you?
    - Do you want me to pick anything up for you?
    - Can I bring something back for you?
    - Do you need anything?
    - Do you want anything?

  3. #3
    joham is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: to buy/to be bought

    Thank you so much, Ann. I was doing exercises and came across the confusing item above. Then how about this one:
    I have no more letters _____ (to type, to be typed), thank you.

    Do both work well? Or neither of them does?

    Thank you again.

  4. #4
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    bhaisahab is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: to buy/to be bought

    Quote Originally Posted by joham View Post
    Thank you so much, Ann. I was doing exercises and came across the confusing item above. Then how about this one:
    I have no more letters _____ (to type, to be typed), thank you.

    Do both work well? Or neither of them does?

    Thank you again.
    "To type" works better. The passive "to be typed" looks a little strange.

  5. #5
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    Raymott is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: to buy/to be bought

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    "To type" works better. The passive "to be typed" looks a little strange.
    I disagree. The speaker is thanking someone for something. In the context, I imagine this is a boss talking to his secretary.
    I have no more letters to be typed, thank you.

    Without the "thank you", I'd select the simpler choice.

  6. #6
    bhaisahab's Avatar
    bhaisahab is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: to buy/to be bought

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    I disagree. The speaker is thanking someone for something. In the context, I imagine this is a boss talking to his secretary.
    I have no more letters to be typed, thank you.

    Without the "thank you", I'd select the simpler choice.
    Yes you are right Ray, I missed the "thank you" at the end.

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