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University of VictoriaIntroduction to IT English
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Infinitives

Definition

An infinitive is the to + verb form of a verb.

Example

I like to surf the Internet.

Explanation

An infinitive can be used —

  • as the object of a verb.
  • as the subject of a clause.
  • to express purpose.
  • after certain adjectives, for example, “glad”, “happy”, “afraid”, “lucky”.
  • after certain verbs or verb + noun / pronoun combinations, for example, “expect”, “hope”, “plan”, “decide”, “promise”, “pretend”, “tell someone”, “remind someone”, “force someone”, “need someone”, “want someone”, etc.
  • after certain expressions, for example, “too”, “enough”.
  • in the simple form (without “to”) with certain verbs, for example, “see”, “feel”, “make”, “have”, “let”, etc.
  • to express the negative when “not” is placed before it.
  • in the past and passive forms.