Gerund vs. Infinitive

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Gerund vs. Infinitive

Post  Admin on Mon Jun 20, 2011 6:36 pm

All about "Gerunds"

1- we use gerunds as a subject (noun). It's appeared more often than in infinitives
ex. Cycling is very common in the Netherlands. (more authentic and natural use than To cycle is very common in.)

2. Gerunds are used after certain verbs i.e. verbs of liking, disliking, saying, thinking, etc. ■ after common Phrasal verbs
ex.I like walking after having my dinner/I fancy eating out with my friends ■ she kept on working even after 6.

3. gerunds are used with certain expressions.
ex. I can’t see the point of playing further on.

4- ■ after prepositions ■ verbs and expressions after the preposition to ■ by + ing/without + ing = how people do something
ex.I am not interested in working with her. ■We look forward to hearing from you. ■ By taking the intensive course, she passed the test.

5- after the verbs of senses to describe experiencing an incomplete part of an action
BUT: when the same verbs are used with bare infinitive it describes that one has experienced (seen, heard, watched, noticed, etc.) the whole action.

ex. I heard her talking to Tim. (I heard a part of her conversation but not the whole of it)
I heard her say that. (you experienced the whole of her conversation, not just a part or residue of it)

6- verbs such as waste, lose, spend (time, money, etc.) also take gerunds
ex. He lost all of his money investing in a wrong place.

7- when replacing a relative clause (participle clause)
ex. The woman standing at the door was his wife. (who was standing at the door)

8- to express reason why something took place or happened. (Participle clause)
ex.Having finished my homework a little earlier, I went to bed.
ex. Being hungry at that time, I devoured all of it.

9- To express time ■ action happening at the same time ■ actions occurring one after another.
ex. After taking/ having taken the bath, I went to bed.
<font color="green">ex. 10- replacing past simple in narratives when actions happened immediately one after another.
ex. Seeing him coming, she locked the front door. = She saw him coming and she locked the door.

11- Gerunds are used to avoid repeating the past continuous in the same sentence.
ex. She was eating her sandwich and driving. = she was eating her sandwich and she was driving at the same time.

1- The simple –ing form refers to the present or future. 2- The perfect –ing indicates the fact that the action of the -ing form happened before the action of the verb 3- simple –ing = perfect - ing
ex. 1- Jogging is really good for being fit, slim and smart. 2- He admitted to having stolen the watch/he denied having lied to the jury/he mentioned having visited her often 3- She admitted to having slapped/slapping him


Verbs taking the –ing form or to + inf. with a change in meaning

1. go on + inf. = then
go on + -ing = continue

2. regret (pr. Simple) + inf. (say, tell, etc.) = be sorry to
regret + -ing = feel sorry about

3. try + inf = attempt
try + -ing = to experiment

4. like + inf. = prefer to do sth even though we may not enjoy it
like + ing. = enjoy (hobbies & interests)
would like to + inf. =want (specific preference)

5. sorry + inf. = apologizing for a present action
sorry + ing = apologize for an earlier action

6. mean + inf. = intend to
mean + ing = one thing resulting in another

7. forget + inf. = not remember
forget + ing = not recall

8. remember + inf. = not forget (necessary actions)
remember + ing = recall

9. stop + inf. = stop briefly to do sth else
stop + ing = give in, give up

10. be afraid + inf. = unwilling to do sth
be afraid + ing = afraid that what is mentioned through -ing form may take place.


Verbs taking the –ing form or to +inf. without a change in meaning

NOTE: we never have two – ing forms together:
It’s starting to get hot.
X It’s starting getting hot.

1- begin, start, continue, pro- pose, bother, intend
Don’t bother to do/doing it

2- advise, allow, permit, recommend, encourage + to-inf. (when followed by an object or in passive form) + ing (when they are not followed by an object)

need, require, want + ing /+ passive infinitive = some thing needs to be repaired/ improved
ex. His jacket needs ironing/to be ironed.

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