I was asked to identify the correct sentence between
1. He was lost in thought, as if recalling something significant to him.
2. He was lost in thought, as if to recall something significant to him.
The answer is No.2. But I'm not clear why I can't use as if recalling, which seems grammatically correct?
Would you explain it to me? Thank you.
To my ear they're both pssible, with different meanings.
In 1 it's 'as if he was recalling...'; a memory seemed to be distracting him.
In 2 the appearance is that he was blocking everything out of his mind, so that he could bring something to mind.
I reckon 2 is less likely to occur, but it's quite possible. Anyway, it's a bad question.
So they are both right. It has nothing to do with the word recall. I had thought that No.2 is correct maybe it's because people do not say "He is recalling" but "He recalls something." Thank bhaisahab and BobK.