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Thread: Verb + Verb

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    #1

    Verb + Verb

    Hi,
    Could someone please explain the grammar of the following sentence -

    "All he does is speak English".

    Is "All he does" the subject, "is" the be verb, "speak" a verb and "English" the noun?

    I'm confused with "is speak". Is it ok to have verb + verb?

    In fact "does is speak" is verb + verb + verb.

    I only studied "to speak" like in "I want to learn to speak English" so "is speak" seems strange.

    A break down of the subject/object/verb in the sentence and any explanation would be good.

    Thanks

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    #2

    Re: Verb + Verb

    Quote Originally Posted by uniopp View Post
    Hi,
    Could someone please explain the grammar of the following sentence -

    "All he does is speak English".

    Is "All he does" the subject, "is" the be verb, "speak" a verb and "English" the noun?

    I'm confused with "is speak". Is it ok to have verb + verb?

    In fact "does is speak" is verb + verb + verb.

    I only studied "to speak" like in "I want to learn to speak English" so "is speak" seems strange.

    A break down of the subject/object/verb in the sentence and any explanation would be good.

    Thanks
    Pseudo-cleft.

    All (that) he does is (to) speak English.
    What he does is (to) speak English.
    To speak English is what he does. That is what he does.

    (to) speak English = bare infinitive in form and predicate nominative in function.

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    #3

    Re: Verb + Verb

    "All he does (noun clause, subject) is (verb) speak English (subject complement)".

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    #4

    Re: Verb + Verb

    Thanks for your help.
    As I understand it -

    All he does = noun clause (subject)
    is = be verb
    speak = linking verb
    English = noun (predicate nominative/subject complement)

    Is that correct?

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