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    #1

    Verbs followed by an infinitive of purpose

    Hi,

    I'd like to ask if the verb "finish" can be followed by an infinitive of purpose. I know that this verb is normally followed by gerund.
    However, some verbs, e.g. "stop", may be followed by both and there's a change in meaning.

    Does the same rule apply to "finish"? Thank you for your reply.

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    #2

    Re: Verbs followed by an infinitive of purpose

    Why not give us some examples.

    I rather think you can use finish in the same way as stop, so give us a "stop to" example and see if we can substitue "finish"

    For example, "I have to stop to see where I am" might work, but if the sense is "I have to stop/finish doing what I'm doing to see where I am, the gerund is implied.

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    #3

    Re: Verbs followed by an infinitive of purpose

    I don't have any particular sentence to show you - because I wasn't able to find any.

    So you think it's acceptable to say, "I had to finish to see where I am."?

    It's clear that finish is followed by gerund in sentences like, "I finished working to have some time for ... ".

    Thank you.

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    #4

    Re: Verbs followed by an infinitive of purpose

    Quote Originally Posted by Margee View Post
    I don't have any particular sentence to show you - because I wasn't able to find any.

    So you think it's acceptable to say, "I had to finish to see where I am."?

    It's clear that finish is followed by gerund in sentences like, "I finished working to have some time for ... ".

    Thank you.
    Finish might work in some isolated cases, but if you've got nothing in mind, and you already know that "stop" works, why not keep using stop?
    I can think of many cases where "finish" would be wrong.
    "I had to stop and/to think" cannot be said as "I had to finish and/to think".

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    #5

    Re: Verbs followed by an infinitive of purpose

    I'm not a teacher.

    Quote:

    Hi,

    I'd like to ask if the verb "finish" can be followed by an infinitive of purpose. I know that this verb is normally followed by gerund.
    However, some verbs, e.g. "stop", may be followed by both and there's a change in meaning.

    Does the same rule apply to "finish"? Thank you for your reply.
    (Margee)

    Hi Margee,

    In Modern English the gerund is widely used and often completes with the infinitive.

    With a number of verbs and word-groups both the gerund and the infinitive may be used. The most important of them are: to be afraid, to begin, to cease, to continue, can afford, to dread, to fear, to hate, to intent,to like (dislike), to neglect, to prefer, to propose, to remember, to recollect, to start, to stop.

    With the verb “to stop” the infinitive and the gerund have different syntactical functions.

    The gerund forms part of a compound verbal aspect predicate.

    They stopped talking when he came in.

    He stopped smoking.

    The infinitive has the function of an adverbial nmodifier of purpose.

    She stoped to exchange a few words with a neighbour.

    He stopped to smoke.

    In following cases only the gerund is used:

    1. With the verbs and verbal phrases: to avoid, to burst out, to deny, to enjoy, to excuse, to fancy (in imperative sentences as an exclamation of surprise), to finish,…etc.

    He finished working.

    She finished dressing quickly, put on her hat and went down.

    When the Committee had finished deciding on its politics, he had gone home.

    I finished typing the report just minutes before it was due.

    When I finish playing football I'll probably be coaching and be one of those still playing in Wimbledon's reserves at 40.

    Regards,

    V.

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    #6

    Re: Verbs followed by an infinitive of purpose

    Hi,

    thank you. Well, I ask because my student asked me and I wasn't sure. I found some interesting examples in BNC:

    "in second place, which is where we must finish to be assured of a European place. "
    "cross-country course, although only three must finish to score. "
    "three brothers went after father Mm. er finished to dig the graves. I see. Yeah. Yes. So erm " - this one really seems incorrect to me, but it's spoken language, so I guess it's acceptable?

    I wish I were a native speaker :)

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