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  1. leesks
    Guest
    #1

    This is a 'very difficult' question......

    As a non native speaker of English, I feel very annoyed by the grammatical acceptance of the following sentence.

    'When the train came to his station, he got up and stood patiently in front of the door, waiting for it opened. '

    To me, using 'opened' in the end seems a little bit improper after the verb 'wait for' in the sentence above.

    I'd like to hear general native speakers ' opinion about this. And if using 'opened' is not acceptable, would you explain why? I mean, i hope to know if there is some grammatical explanation for it.

    Of course, as far as i know '... waiting for it to open' would be a good choice.
    and one more thing, how about using 'waiting for it to be opened'?

    waiting for your kind answer... THANK YOU


    • Join Date: Dec 2005
    • Posts: 43
    #2

    Re: This is a 'very difficult' question......

    hi. you are correct. 'opened' is not acceptable. '... waiting for it to open' is fine. you can't be 'waiting for it opened'. opened is the past tense of open, meaning the door already is open... then what are you waiting on?

    'waiting for it to be opened' is not grammatically incorrect, but it is not the best way for that sentence. that sounds like it is from a command or instruction, "the train door is not to be opened under any circumstance!"

  2. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
    #3

    Re: This is a 'very difficult' question......

    These are grammatical:
    EX: waiting for the door to open.
    EX: waiting for the door to be opened (by someone/something).

    This is ungrammatical (*):
    EX: waiting for the door to *opened.

    The -ed suffix on "opened" carries tense-like properties. "to" is an infinitive marker. It lacks tense properties. The pair "to opened" doesn't work.

    This is also ungrammatical:
    EX: [and was] *waiting for the door opened.

    "waiting" is part of a larger phrase, notably, "[was] waiting". The verb "was" carries tense. It's the main tense carrier in that sentence. There's a rule in English that says that every sentence must have one, and only one, tense carrying verb. If there are other verbs in the sentence they shouldn't carry tense; they should be in their infintive form, like this,

    EX: waiting for the door to open.
    EX: waiting for the door to be opened.

    Note, "opened" functions as a past participle above, not as a verb.

    In short, *"door to opened" is ungrammatical. There's no verb.

    EX: to be opened (verb)
    EX: to open (verb)
    EX: to opened (participle)
    EX: The door opened. (verb)

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