Infinitives
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Infinitives. Hidden & Split Infinitives. After verbs of perception, the infinitive is used without to . This is a hidden infinitive . Verbs of perception are verbs such as hear , see , and feel . We heard the astronomer talk about the comet.

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Infinitives

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Infinitives

Infinitives

Hidden & Split Infinitives


After verbs of perception the infinitive is used without to this is a hidden infinitive

After verbs of perception, the infinitive is used without to. This is a hidden infinitive.

  • Verbs of perception are verbs such ashear, see, andfeel.

  • We heard the astronomer talk about the comet.

  • The crowd saw the moon appear red that night.


Hidden infinitives also appear after the verbs let make dare need help

Hidden infinitives also appear after the verbs let, make, dare, need, & help.

  • We would not dare use Marshall’s telescope without his permission.

  • I will help feed the dogs.

  • Mary let us bathe them after feeding time.


The to is also left out after the prepositions but and except and the conjunction than

The tois also left out after the prepositions but and except and the conjunction than.

  • Marshall does little but talk about the comet these days.

  • I’d rather conduct an experiment than read about science.


An adverb placed between to and the verb makes a split infinitive

An adverb placed between to and the verb makes a split infinitive.

  • We were told to carefully view each star.

  • A split infinitive does not result in good writing. To avoid it, put the verb where it sounds right:

  • We were told to view each star carefully.


An adverb placed between to and the verb makes a split infinitive1

An adverb placed between to and the verb makes a split infinitive.

  • (Split Infinitive):

    Marshall told us to not damage his telescope.

  • (Corrected version):

    Marshall told us not to damage his telescope.


How would you correct this sentence

How would you correct this sentence?

  • Barry was asked to politely chew his food.

  • Barry was asked to chew his food politely.

    The adverb placement can change the meaning of the sentence. Be careful:

  • Barry was asked politelyto chew is food.


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