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11.4. Use of English..’to’ infinitive or –ing form.

Use of English

A.  ’to’ infinitive and the –ing form without a change in meaning:

Begin, continue, intend, start,  Don’t use two –ing forms together: They are beginning to go to PE classes. ( not beginning going!)

Advise, allow, encourage, permit, recommend and require when followed by an object or in passive forms take the ’to’ infinitive. He is allowed to take swim classes again.

Need, require, want by ’to’ infinitive, the –ing form or the passive infinitive.

You need to clean your shoes. Your shoes need cleaning.  Your shoes need to be cleaned.  


B. Verbs taking ’to’ infinitive or –ing form with a change in meaning.

Forget: We forgot to tell our coach that there would be changes in the schedule. (forget to do sg)

            They will never forget winning the game (forget a past event)

Remember: Remember to read the rules of the game. (remember to do sg)

                   I don’t remember meeting the football star in person. (recall a past event)

Mean: He means to take the training sessions more seriously. (intend to)

           Winning more games means working harder.  (involve)

Go on: After finishing her BA in sports she went on to work for a master’s degree. (finish sg and start doing sg new)

            She went on doing her master’s program. (continue)

Regret: I regret to tell you that your anatomy test failed. (be sorry to)

    He regretted not working harder for the anatomy test. (have second thoughts about sg already done)

Would prefer 8specific preference)
He would prefer to move the training sessions to Mondays and Wednesdays.

Prefer: (in general)

My dad prefers watching football to watching table tennis.

Try: She tried hard to prepare for the championship. (do one’s best)

      Try adopting a new training method.  (do sg as experiment)

Want:  They want to find a new site for the skiing event. (wish)

           The skis need waxing. (sg needs to be done)

Stop: He stopped to tie his shoelace. (pause for a short period of time)

          He stopped talking to his coach. (finish doing sg)

Be sorry: I’m sorry to hear you have been injured. (regret)

               I’m sorry for not helping you earlier.   (apologize)

Hate: I hate to interrupt, but you need to do this exercise more vigorously. (hate what one     is about to do)

         I hate making you feel uncomfortable. (you are already doing it).

Be afraid: I’m afraid to do extreme sports. (be frightened)

She is afraid of breaking her leg if she is jumping from that height. (be afraid that sg might   happen)