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  1. #1
    Vorpals is offline Newbie
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    Default Compound Infinitives

    In the infinitive phrase "to eat much and sleep plenty", what part of speech is "sleep"? In the original sentence, it is acting as a direct object just in case you need to know.

    Is it an infinitive, just without "to" like "to eat", or something else?

    Also, is the actual infinitive of the phrase "to eat much and sleep" or something else?



    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Bamako2 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Compound Infinitives

    Let us take a look at this sentence:

    We want to eat much and sleep plenty.

    Can the words be grouped like that:
    We [want to] eat much and sleep plenty.

    , or like that:

    We [want] [to eat and sleep].
    ?


    Is "want to" a modal-like expression like "have to"?

    Catenative test:
    We want to sleep.
    We want a brief sleep.

    --> No catenative.

    (Semi-)auxiliary test:
    Want we to...?
    will want to...
    wanting to

    We want to eat.
    We want that.

    I think "want", similarly to like, stop, regret, etc., is a main verb in
    I ... to sleep.
    "want" may take an infinitive as its object. So, the grouping should look like this:

    We want [to eat much and sleep plenty].
    We want that.

    The object of want is the bracketed compound infinitive phrase functioning as a noun.

    what part of speech is "sleep"?
    Bare infinitive: to eat much and (to) sleep plenty.

  3. #3
    5jj's Avatar
    5jj is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Compound Infinitives

    Quote Originally Posted by Bamako2 View Post
    Bare infinitive: to eat much and (to) sleep plenty.
    It's not really a bare infinitive as it would be in "we will eat and sleep". It's a to-infinitive - we understand that the to before eat also carries over to sleep.

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