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  1. #1
    yuriya's Avatar
    yuriya is offline Member
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    think to tell / think of telling

    Hello, everyone. Recently I noticed people using infinitives after think instead of using gerunds as in Didn't you think to tell me about this?
    Is there any difference between these expressions?

    1. You never thought to tell me about this?
    2. You never thought of telling me about this?
    3. You never thought to go see the doctor?
    4. You never thought of going see the doctor?

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by yuriya; 30-May-2010 at 03:49.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: think to tell / think of telling

    The to form is more emphatic to me, so in the first one, what the speaker has just learned has come as something of a shock.

  3. #3
    sarat_106 is offline Key Member
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    Exclamation Re: think to tell / think of telling

    Quote Originally Posted by yuriya View Post
    Hello, everyone. Recently I noticed people using infinitives after think instead of using gerunds as in Didn't you think to tell me about this?
    Is there any difference between these expressions?

    1. You never thought to tell me about this? (To show a rigid or uncompromising attitude - never consider it proper or reasonable to tell me…)
    2. You never thought of telling me about this? ( To show a careless attitude - never take into consideration or keep in mind of telling me….
    3. You never thought to go and see the doctor? (never employed your mind rationally to go and see …)
    4. You never thought of going see the doctor? (never choose in your mind of going…)

    Thanks in advance!
    I agree with Tdol.

  4. #4
    yuriya's Avatar
    yuriya is offline Member
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    Smile Re: think to tell / think of telling

    Quote Originally Posted by yuriya View Post
    1. You never thought to tell me about this?
    2. You never thought of telling me about this?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    The to form is more emphatic to me, so in the first one, what the speaker has just learned has come as something of a shock.
    So, is it OK to conclude that you'd feel the speaker's anger or surprise in sentence 1 while sentence 2 is more or less neutral?

  5. #5
    Elemoi is offline Junior Member
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    Re: think to tell / think of telling

    Quote Originally Posted by yuriya View Post
    You never thought to tell me about this.
    Does this mean "You never expected to tell me about this"?

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: think to tell / think of telling

    Quote Originally Posted by yuriya View Post
    So, is it OK to conclude that you'd feel the speaker's anger or surprise in sentence 1 while sentence 2 is more or less neutral?
    Sentence 2 could be neutral or it could express surprise, etc, so I think the difference is that sentence 1 couldn't be used in a neutral way.

  7. #7
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: think to tell / think of telling

    Quote Originally Posted by Elemoi View Post
    Does this mean "You never expected to tell me about this"?
    Not to me- it's like 'Why didn't you' or 'You should have'.

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