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  1. dtommy79's Avatar
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      • Native Language:
      • Hungarian
      • Home Country:
      • Hungary
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 35
    #1

    to + gerund or infinitive

    Hi,

    I never know this. could anyone give me a quick explanation?

    And also are these sentences correct, if yes, what are the differences:

    1. Hard work is the key to pass examinations.
    2. Hard work is the key to passing examinations.
    3. Hard work is the key passing examinations.


    Thank you


    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 1
    #2

    Smile Re: to + gerund or infinitive

    Hi,

    Number 2 is correct.
    Hard work is the key to passing examinations.

    It is very difficult to give a simple explanation as to when to use the to + infinitive or to + gerund.

    Some more examples:
    1) I would like to pass the examination.
    2) He isn't used to passing examinations.
    3) He really wanted to pass the examination.

    Example 2 requires the gerund. The meaning would otherwise be different.
    "USED TO PASS" is not the same as "USED TO PASSING".

    Below is a link which may help you. Learning when to use the to + infinitive or to + gerund requires a lot of memorization.

    verbs followed by gerunds and infinitives

    Hope this helps!
    Mister Kip


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 2,886
    #3

    Lightbulb Re: to + gerund or infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by dtommy79 View Post
    Hi,

    I never know this. could anyone give me a quick explanation?

    And also are these sentences correct, if yes, what are the differences:

    1. Hard work is the key to pass examinations.
    2. Hard work is the key to passing examinations.
    3. Hard work is the key passing examinations.


    Thank you
    1. 'to' is an infinite marker
    2. 'to' is a preposition
    1=2
    3. progressive aspect is implied; it more expresses what you need during an exam, while 1 and 2 say what you need to do before an exam.

    nem látok különbéget az 1. és a második között.
    a 3-as azt mondja mi kell a vizsga alatt hogy sikerüljön.


    • Join Date: Sep 2005
    • Posts: 260
    #4

    Re: to + gerund or infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by svartnik View Post
    3. progressive aspect is implied; it more expresses what you need during an exam, while 1 and 2 say what you need to do before an exam.
    3. is simply wrong. 'Key' needs the 'to' following it, because it is t carrying the idea of 'way' or 'means'.

    2. is the best choice, 'key' usually accompanies an activity (unless you are talking about an actual, physical key!) as it is used to describe a way to make an activity successful. The image it is conveying is using a key to start something, as in starting a car. No activity-> get the key- > you have activity.

    1. is awkward, for the reason given above, but could work if you used 'pass' as a noun - 'hard work is the key to an exam pass'


    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 2,886
    #5

    Re: to + gerund or infinitive

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Whitehead View Post
    3. is simply wrong. 'Key' needs the 'to' following it, because it is t carrying the idea of 'way' or 'means'.
    2. is the best choice, 'key' usually accompanies an activity (unless you are talking about an actual, physical key!) as it is used to describe a way to make an activity successful. The image it is conveying is using a key to start something, as in starting a car. No activity-> get the key- > you have activity.
    1. is awkward, for the reason given above, but could work if you used 'pass' as a noun - 'hard work is the key to an exam pass'
    On second reading, I agree that 3 is incorrect; however, i do not see why 2 is not okay.

    To pass examinations hard wor is the key.
    I do not think it is against any rule to extrapose "To pass examinations."

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