Results 1 to 8 of 8
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: May 2012
    • Posts: 21
    #1

    Try to / try + ing ?

    Hi,
    I've never grasped completely the difference between these two constructions: my English teacher used to say that they differ only slightly and suggested using the first one.
    For instance, a few days ago I was at the train station and a man asked me something about a certain train he had to take, but, as I didn't know the answer for sure, I advised he went to an info point by telling him: "Try to go to the info point, they should be able to help you".
    Is it right "Try to go" in this sentence? When would you use the "Try + ing" construction? Could you also say "Try and go"?

    Thank you.

  1. bhaisahab's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Ireland

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 25,624
    #2

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ice&fire View Post
    Hi,
    I've never grasped completely the difference between these two constructions: my English teacher used to say that they differ only slightly and suggested using the first one.
    For instance, a few days ago I was at the train station and a man asked me something about a certain train he had to take, but, as I didn't know the answer for sure, I advised he went to an info point by telling him: "Try to go to the info point, they should be able to help you".
    Is it right "Try to go" in this sentence? When would you use the "Try + ing" construction? Could you also say "Try and go"?

    Thank you.
    "Try to go to the info point, they should be able to help you". In this case you should use "try going". The way you have written it implies that they may be some obstacle to his going to the info point.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: May 2012
    • Posts: 21
    #3

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    I used the verb "try" to imply that I wasn't a hundred percent sure they would know the answer, not because of some obstacle (actually the info point was very close to us). So if there are some problems or obstacles I should use "try + ing"? I still can't truly tell the difference.

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Ireland

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 25,624
    #4

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ice&fire View Post
    I used the verb "try" to imply that I wasn't a hundred percent sure they would know the answer, not because of some obstacle (actually the info point was very close to us). So if there are some problems or obstacles I should use "try + ing"? I still can't truly tell the difference.
    In the given context "try going" is correct, it means "go there and see if they can help you". If, however, you think that there may be some obstacle in the way of actually arriving at the info point, use "try to go".

  3. BrunaBC's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Brazil
      • Current Location:
      • Brazil

    • Join Date: May 2012
    • Posts: 248
    #5

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    Some verbs require its object in the ing form (or not) with a little or no change in meaning, such as: I like to play cards, or I like playing cards.
    On the other hand some verbs change in meaning depending on the infinitive form or ing form that you apply after them. Consider the examples:

    He stopped to smoke -> He was doing something else and stopped in order to smoke.
    He stopped smoking -> He quit smoking.

    The window is stuck, try to open it. -> it means you have a problem, or an obstacle and you try to do something to solve it.
    It's hot here, try opening the window -> In this case you are suggesting a solution to the fact that it's hot by opening the window.
    Not a teacher.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: May 2012
    • Posts: 21
    #6

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    Ok, I think I get it now. Thank you for your help.

  4. Barb_D's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 19,218
    #7

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    Try to X: I think you may have some trouble doing this, but you should try.
    Try Xing: Xing may solve your problem.

    Try to listen to the speech. (I know you're bored, but it would be good if you attempted to sit still and listen.)
    Try listening ot the speech. (If you listen to the speech, you'll learn something that may help you.)

    I'm going to try to call my daughter. But she's a doctor, so I don't know if I'll get through. I may have trouble reaching her.
    I'm going to try calling my daughter. She's a doctor, so she may know whether this rash is serious enough to go to the hospital.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Italian
      • Home Country:
      • Italy
      • Current Location:
      • Italy

    • Join Date: May 2012
    • Posts: 21
    #8

    Re: Try to / try + ing ?

    Thanks, all these examples have been of great help.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-Apr-2012, 04:43
  2. try to V / try ~ing
    By wotcha in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 24-May-2011, 18:04
  3. [Grammar] Will be + ing / Will be
    By Gaurav_2010 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-Dec-2010, 05:32
  4. when+ ing / whilst + ing
    By Ochinoam in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 31-Jul-2009, 14:42
  5. verbs with-ing and without-ing
    By diplomacy in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-Apr-2007, 03:04

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •