[Grammar] All you have to do is do/to do/doing ...?

Outre

Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2017
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Chinese
Home Country
China
Current Location
China
Hello,

I'm confused about the following sentences.

1. All you have to do is study.
2. All you have to do is to study.
3. All you have to do is studying.

4. Study is all you have to do.
5. To study is all you have to do.
6. Studying is all you have to do.


"Be + verb" is common but it seems grammatically incorrect because verb cannot be object. Could someone explain that?

And what are the differences between the correct sentences?

Thanks!
 

GoesStation

No Longer With Us
Joined
Dec 22, 2015
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
Hello,

I'm confused about the following sentences.

1. All you have to do is study. :tick:
2. All you have to do is to study. :tick:
3. All you have to do is studying. :cross:

4. Study is all you have to do. :cross:
5. To study is all you have to do. :cross:
6. Studying is all you have to do. :tick:
1, 2, and 6 mean the same thing.
 

sania-baharat

Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2017
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Urdu
Home Country
Pakistan
Current Location
Iran
GoesStation,
Why #2 is correct, but #5 is not? "To study" is the to-infinitive verb that can be used an a subject .

2. All you have to do is to study.
5. To study is all you have to do
 

GoesStation

No Longer With Us
Joined
Dec 22, 2015
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
GoesStation,
Why #2 is correct, but #5 is not? "To study" is the to-infinitive verb that can be used an a subject .

2. All you have to do is to study.
5. To study is all you have to do
I vacillated on number 5. It just doesn't look natural with the the infinitive at the beginning.
 

Matthew Wai

VIP Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2013
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Chinese
Home Country
China
Current Location
China
'Studying' as a gerund can be used as a subject complement, so why is 3 wrong?
 

GoesStation

No Longer With Us
Joined
Dec 22, 2015
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
Why ​is #2 [STRIKE]is[/STRIKE] correct, but not #5 [STRIKE]is not[/STRIKE]? "To study" is the to-infinitive verb that can be used as a subject. [No space before a comma.]
See the right way to form a question above.
 

Outre

Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2017
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Chinese
Home Country
China
Current Location
China
1. All you have to do is study.
3. All you have to do is studying.

Why can the verb "study" be used as a subject? I think "Studying" should be correct. But the opposite is true. It's there any explanation?
 

Matthew Wai

VIP Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2013
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Chinese
Home Country
China
Current Location
China
Also, native speakers find 'is study' more natural, although I don't know why.
 

Outre

Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2017
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Chinese
Home Country
China
Current Location
China
All you have to do is studying is not natural.

The underlying pattern of the sentence is: All you have to do is you have to study.

This is actually produced as:

All you have to do is to study.
All you have to do is study.
He did nothing but he did wait.
→ He did nothing but wait.


Are the sentences above correct?

Can I say "He did nothing but to wait?" (I think it is incorrect.)
 
Top