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    • Join Date: Sep 2006
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    #1

    General qusestion

    I saw her enter.

    What relationship does the infinitive "enter" have with the rest of the sentence? Is it modifying any other word? I believe that the direct object "her" is the infinitive's subject, but I'd also want to know whether the infinitive is a modifier.

    Thank you.

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    • Join Date: Aug 2006
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    #2

    Re: General qusestion

    Quote Originally Posted by Cooklava View Post
    I saw her enter.

    What relationship does the infinitive "enter" have with the rest of the sentence? Is it modifying any other word? I believe that the direct object "her" is the infinitive's subject, but I'd also want to know whether the infinitive is a modifier.

    Thank you.
    In English, the direct perception of an event can be expressed through the use of either a bare infinitive [a] or a participial complement [b]:

    a] I saw her enter the house - bare infinitive [one- time action]

    Enter is perceived as an infinitival verb complement.

    b] I saw her entering the house - participial complement [continuous action]

    Entering is perceived as a participial verb complement.

    Her is a direct object in this sentence.

    Semantically, the use of the participial form indicates that the event perceived is viewed as being in progress [sentence b], whereas the use of the simple form [that is, bare infinitive] shows that it is witnessed as a one-time action or in its entirety [ sentence a]

    Additionally, her enter can be considered an accusative and/with infinitive construction[ACI = accusativus cum infinitivo ]. This type of construction is present in other Germanic languages as well.
    Last edited by Teia; 14-Oct-2007 at 19:32.

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