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    #1

    verb+gerund/infinitive

    Hi all

    This is my first "ask" in this forum.

    I have been struggling about some rules of verb+gerund/infinitive recently.

    Question: Why the following verbs can't become the style of "verb+to+infinitive"??

    Example sentences:
    1) avoid: He avoided talking to her.(O) =>He avoided to talk to her.(X)
    2) consider:We're "considering" buying a new car. (O) =>We're considering to buy a car.(X)
    3) discuss: We discussed working at the company.(O) =>We discussed to work at the company.(X)
    4) etc...

    I knew that these verbs are all trasitive verbs so that they need an object, which is a noun or a gerund as the aboves. However the following verbs are all transitive verbs but have the style of "verb+to+infinitive".

    5) plan: We plan to go to Europe this summer.
    6) swear:She swore to tell the truth.
    7) manage: He manaaged to open the door without the key.

    These are all talking about future actions.

    What I was thinking about was that the English rule is not so rigid but flexible and I put the following new rules:

    8) verb+gerund=>mentioning passed experiences or on going actions.
    9) verb+to+infinitive=> talking about some future actions.

    However I am still struggling about the sentence 1)-4) above even on this rule. Could you please help me out?

    Thank you for your help in advance.( sorry for the long question.)

  1. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingfish View Post
    Hi all

    This is my first "ask" in this forum.

    I have been struggling about some rules of verb+gerund/infinitive recently.

    Question: Why the following verbs can't become the style of "verb+to+infinitive"??

    Example sentences:
    1) avoid: He avoided talking to her.(O) =>He avoided to talk to her.(X)
    2) consider:We're "considering" buying a new car. (O) =>We're considering to buy a car.(X)
    3) discuss: We discussed working at the company.(O) =>We discussed to work at the company.(X)
    4) etc...

    I knew that these verbs are all trasitive verbs so that they need an object, which is a noun or a gerund as the aboves. However the following verbs are all transitive verbs but have the style of "verb+to+infinitive".

    5) plan: We plan to go to Europe this summer.
    6) swear:She swore to tell the truth.
    7) manage: He manaaged to open the door without the key.

    These are all talking about future actions.

    What I was thinking about was that the English rule is not so rigid but flexible and I put the following new rules:

    8) verb+gerund=>mentioning passed experiences or on going actions.
    9) verb+to+infinitive=> talking about some future actions.

    However I am still struggling about the sentence 1)-4) above even on this rule. Could you please help me out?

    Thank you for your help in advance.( sorry for the long question.)
    ***not a teacher***
    I hope I've got you right...
    I think you already know that some verbs in English can ONLY be followed by a gerund (verb+ing) - examples 1 to 4 -, and some others followed only by to+infinitive. Most dictionaries will tell you about this by some notes put in italics and within brackets. However, please take care not to generalise the rule you've come up with. Only verbs such as "continue, stop, like, etc." can be used that way. I'll give you some examples:

    1. The teacher continued talking about their exam. (here, the teacher didn't change the subject; just probably made a pause, and then continued talking...)
    2. The teacher continued to talk about their exam. (in this case, the teacher started to talk about a new subject)

    Or:

    1. I like teaching! (I have the experience, and I am a teacher now.)
    2. I like to teach some day. (I haven't taught yet, and I have the desire to experience it in the future.)


    Please google-search for the verbs which have different meanings in their infinitive and gerund modes.

    Hope it helps.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingfish View Post

    I (put) proposed/suggested/made/came up with the following new rules:

    8) verb+gerund=>mentioning passed past experiences or on-going actions.
    9) verb+to+infinitive=> talking about some future actions.

    You are right in your thoughts that:

    In many verb+infinitive constructions the situation denoted by the second verb will actualise after that denoted by the first. 'I hope (now) to see you (in the future)'.

    In many verb+gerund constructions the situation denoted by the second verb does not actualise after that denoted by the first. 'I enjoy (at all times) cycling (at all times)'; 'I remember (now) meeting Lindsay (in the past)'.

    However, there are many exceptions, such as: 'I fancy (now) going out (in the future)'; 'John is pretending (now) to be angry (now)'.

    Your 'rules' may cause you to make mistakes. Use a dictionary, as Mehrgan suggested..
    5

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    #4

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by Mehrgan View Post
    I hope I've got you right... You were pretty close.

    1. The teacher continued talking about their exam. (here, the teacher didn't change the subject; just probably made a pause, and then continued talking...)
    2. The teacher continued to talk about their exam. (in this case, the teacher started to talk about a new subject) Not necessarily. The contrast you describe would be true of the phrasal verb 'go on' (instead of 'continue'). Your sentences with 'continue' could mean effectively the same.


    1. I like teaching! (I have the experience, and I am a teacher now.)
    2. I like to teach some day. (I haven't taught yet, and I have the desire to experience it in the future.)
    That would be more likely with I'd like to.

    The difference between 'like+ gerund' and 'like + to-infinitive' is more subtle. The following examples may give some idea of it.


    I like playing football. (Playing football is an activity that I enjoy, a general statement.)
    I like to play football. (I play football sometimes; when I do so, I enjoy it; more specific.)

    The contrast is clearer in:

    I like seeing the doctor (Seeing the doctor is enjoyable.
    (He is, perhaps, an interesting man.))
    I like to see the doctor once a year. (The annual visit to the doctor is something I choose to do.)
    5

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    #5

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Hello, fivejedjon, Mehrgan

    Thank you very much for your reply and suggestion.

    Please let me take time a little to think over your clear suggestions.

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    #6

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingfish View Post
    Please let me take time a little to think over your clear suggestions.
    Take as long as you need. I suggest that you do not worry too much about 'like'. It is often possible to use either or a gerund or a to-infinitive after this verb (and after 'hate', 'love', 'begin' and a few other verbs) with little practical difference in meaning.

    You should concentrate more on verbs such as 'go on', 'regret', 'remember' and 'try', where the difference in meaning between the gerund and the to-infinitive is significant.

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    #7

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Hello, fivejedjon, Mehrgan

    Thank you for your tight explanation and suggestion. I will follow the suggestion in your last e-mails by using a dictionary always.

    At the same time, I have been kicked around your explanation, however I am still wondering about the "exceptions":

    [QUOTE][However, there are many exceptions, such as: 'I fancy (now) going out (in the future)'; 'John is pretending (now) to be angry (now)'/QUOTE]

    What I am trying is that if possible, I would like to categolize the "exceptions" as much as I could.

    Someone told me the difference between the verbs, anticipate and expect for example. The verb "anticipate" normally has the style of "+gerund". On the other hand, "expect" will have the style of "full infinitive". These verbs, as you know, are similer and showing some "in the future" but having the different styles. "expect+full infinitive" is ok for me but "anticipate+gerund".

    The explanation of this was that "anticipate" is not just expecting "future action" but having the meaning of "preparing before hand", which is related to "now" or past experience. This is why "anticipate" will not be followed by gerund.

    Likewise, if possible, I would like to hear some explanations like the above on the following verbs, which normally have the style of "verb+gerund" but talking about "future" action:

    • avoid/consider/discuss/and mind
    However if I am digging out the corner of a box, or these are too abscure, I will just memorize each but......(sorry for the long question again.)

    PS: "go on" was not in my list during my study for +gerund, I will put it in and remenber.

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    #8

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingfish View Post
    I would like to hear some explanations like the above on the following verbs, which normally have the style of "verb+gerund" but talking about "future" action:
    .
    I think that you are hoping for an explanation that probably doesn't exist.

    I suggest going. I encourage you to go.
    I fancy going. I want/hope to go.


    It seems to me to be moderately arbitrary.

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    #9

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Hi

    Thank you for your reply.

    I see what you mean. I will just memorize it.

    One last question, that if a sentence has the style of " verb+to+infinitive", the sentence is usually talking about " in the future", isn't it?

    hope/learn/manage/......

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    #10

    Re: verb+gerund/infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingfish View Post
    One last question, that if a sentence has the style of " verb+to+infinitive", the sentence is usually talking about " in the future", isn't it?
    So long as we don't have to define 'usually' too precisely.

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