I know go on to do and go on doing have their own separate meanings. My memory tells me the meanings of continue to do and continue doing differenciate in the same way, i.e., the former means go and do something else and the later do the same thing. This seems to be supported by my dictionary, which says:
If there were no real difference between continue to do and continue doing, then the two explanations quoted above could conviniently be combined together and read:persist
1. persist (in sth/in doing sth): continue to do sth, esp in an obstinate and determined way and in spite of opposition, argument or failure
2. persistent with stn: continue doing sth in spite of difficulties
The authers of Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary of Current English, I take, wouldn't have left two explanations here, If they couldn't find a good reason.persistent (in sth/in doing sth), persistent with sth:continue to do sth/doing sth, esp in an obstinate or determined way and in spite of opposition, argument, failure or diffiulties
Then, when I referred to the definition of continue in the same ditionary, what I found is this:
It appears here the linguist who was responsible for this entry thinks the two forms basically mean the same thing.Continue
4. start again after stopping;resume
We continued to rehearse/continued rehearsing the chorus after the break.
Now I am confused.
My question is: If there is a genuine difference, what is it?
Many thanks Richard
The distinction is less clear and they are often used interchangeably.