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  1. #1
    tzfujimino's Avatar
    tzfujimino is online now Key Member
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    Default be surprised at hearing / be surprised to hear

    Hello, everyone.

    Today I have a question as to the usage of 'be surprised at + -ing' and 'be surprised + to-infinitive'.

    One of the students at my school wrote:

    1. My mother was surprised at hearing the news.

    (I'm pretty sure that the student used the -ing form (a gerund) because of the preposition 'at'.)

    I believe it is grammatically correct, but I think it would be more natural to say:

    2. My mother was surprised to hear the news.

    or simply

    3. My mother was surprised at the news.

    Is the sentence #1 written by the student acceptable/natural?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Rover_KE is online now Moderator
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    Default Re: be surprised at hearing / be surprised to hear

    1 is acceptable but 2 and 3 are better.

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