Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Some Verb-ose Observations 2

As I was set to publish my initial article about conjugations and other verb-ose observations, I kept thinking it was getting pretty long. Splitting the observations into a main one about conjugations and a second one seems sensible. (Visit "Conjugations--Some Verb-ose Observations"!) This part of my verb-ose observations pertains to mostly infinitives and gerunds, a couple of verb forms.

The noun infinitive seems more familiar to people than gerund. Gerund is merely the noun usage of the same word that is easily recognizable as a present participle. Baking. Walking. Eating. I'm [gerund] at 5 o'clock. [Gerund] is a fun activity.

Closely related to gerunds are other noun forms that are rooted (!) in the same verb. For example, conjugating and conjugation are both nouns, but they differ. I consider conjugating as a generalized action, but conjugation as a process. Thus, I use conjugation in my blog title instead of conjugating.

As I looked for differentiations of -ing vs. -tion or -ation, I was sidetracked by usage of gerund vs. infinitive, a dilemma that occurs frequently. The English, baby! website explains "only gerunds follow prepositions" To split hairs, the English Teacher Melanie website explains about purpose of something or someone.

Regarding infinitives, I find it curious that Spanish and French infinitives are single words. In English, however, the infinitives are verbs preceded by "to". That complicates conjugating. A Hub Pages article uses a famous phrase in discussing split infinitives. Well, I think it's fine to boldly go where no one has gone before! :-)


Anonymous said...

I was surprised, a long time ago, to learn that English also occasionally has a "bare" infinitive, i.e. an infinitive without the to. An example is the run in "I watched her run the race." We can also have a bare infinitive in response to a question: "What do you want to do tomorrow night?" — "Go to the movies."

whilldtkwriter said...

Thanks for your response. I am sooo rusty on diagramming sentences! The first example is excellent. Regarding the second example, the response is an incomplete sentence, so I'm not sure it falls in the bare infinitive use. A complete sentence response might be "I want to go to the movies". Visit http://www.learnersdictionary.com/search/want%5B1%5D and see some similar examples near the top.

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