Results 1 to 3 of 3
  1. Ryan
    Guest
    #1

    try + to-infinitive/ing-form

    Can you please help me to understand the difference between try + to-infinitive and try + ing-form?

    My book says that the former is used when we talk about making an attempt to do something. The latter, on the other hand, is used when we talk about doing something as an experiment/test. It is a bit too subtle to me.

    Thanks
    Ryan

    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 44,225
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2
    I tried to phone him = I didn't actually manage to get to a phone.

    I tried phoning him= I phoned him but he didn't answer, etc.

  2. RonBee's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Feb 2003
    • Posts: 16,570
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3
    The word "try" almost invariably implies lack of success.

    • He tried to open the door = his attempt to open the door did not succeed.

      He tried opening the door. (I'm not sure what context that would fit in (if any), but presumably opening the door did not get him what he wanted.)


    • "Don't try. Do."
      ----Yoda


    :)

Similar Threads

  1. form
    By Taka in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 28-Oct-2004, 06:01
  2. YOU, the respected form
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 27-Jul-2004, 23:50
  3. True to form
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 23-May-2004, 03:34
  4. True to form
    By bingbing in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 31-Dec-2003, 17:04
  5. first form vs base form
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-Jan-2003, 17:01

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •