The gerund as the complement of the verb 'to be'. 5. However, as subjects or complements, gerunds usually sound more like normal, spoken English, whereas infinitives sound more abstract. The structure is: We start with the subject followed by a verb and an object, which has the form of a gerund, and another object. The hardest thing about learning English is understanding the gerund. The infinitive form of "learn" is "to learn." For example of gerund as a subject: Traveling is a fun experience. However, as subjects or complements, gerunds usually sound more like normal, spoken English, whereas infinitives sound more abstract. Definitions. The Gerund Can be Used as a Subject Complement. (The other two are participles and infinitives.) ; A verbal noun (Examples 3 & 4) is a noun formed from a verb; some verbal nouns end in -ing. An infinitive is the "to" form of the verb. A gerund clause can be a subject complement after "be": The TO-infinitive as a subject complement. DEFINITIONS. Usually, the main verb in the sentence determines whether you use a gerund or an infinitive. For example, with the word "swimming pool" it is a pool for swimming in, it is not a pool that is swimming. Phrasal verbs are composed of a verb + preposition or adverb. The gerund must be used when a verb comes after a preposition. The gerund as the complement of the verb 'to be' Examples. The gerund must be used when a verb comes after a preposition. If this sounds confusing, just remember that 90% of the time, you will use a gerund as the subject or complement of a sentence. * USED IN COMPOUND NOUNS (AS MODIFIERS), Pure verbal nouns/deverbal nouns vs. gerunds, FINITE AND NON-FINITE VERBS (UNINFLECTED VERBS), PAST FORM FOR GERUNDS (The Perfect Gerund). The gerund is necessary after the expressions can't help, can't stand, to be worth, & it's no use. Seeing is believing. The gerund as the complement of the verb 'to be'. It is not part of the infinitive form of the verb. In the following sentences, gerunds sound more natural and would be more common in everyday English. 2. The gerund always has the same function as a noun (although it looks like a verb). Infinitives emphasize the possibility or potential for something and sound more philosophical. A gerund clause can be a subject complement after "be": * The hardest thing about learning English is understan- ding the gerund. THE GERUND. The gerund after prepositions. In compound nouns using the gerund, it is clear that the meaning is that of a noun, not of a continuous verb. All rights reserved. In such situations, gerunds and infinitives are not normally interchangeable. There are some phrasal verbs that include the word "to" as a preposition for example to look forward to, to take to, to be accustomed to, to get around to, & to be used to. Normally, when you make a sentence, you always make sure that the subject of your sentence is noun—a name of person, place, thing, etc. {see Verbs followed by Gerunds and Infinitives, A2 level}. A gerund is one of three classes of words called verbals — words based on verbs and expressing an action or a state of being but serving another grammatical function. A gerund is a noun made from a verb by adding "-ing." BOOK. Both gerunds and infinitives can be used as the subject or the complement of a sentence. Some verbs are followed by infinitives. The gerund form of the verb "read" is "reading." Here in part 1, we introduce gerunds and infinitives and explain the basics of everyday usage. One of life's pleasures is having breakfast in bed. The gerund is a verb which is used as if it were a noun (Examples 1 & 2 below). One of his duties is doing homework. The Gerund Can be Used as an Object of a Preposition. Gerunds examples: We shall be interested in hearing your comments. You can use a gerund as the subject, the complement, or the object of a sentence. Infinitives can be made negative by adding "not.". © EF Education First 2020. If you can put the pronoun "it" after the word "to" and form a meaningful sentence, then the word "to" is a preposition and must be followed by a gerund. Some uses of the gerund are covered on this page. The good news is that our three-part tutorial gives you twenty gerund and infinitive tips to take you from beginner to pro. List of Verbs Followed by Infinitives. VERBAL AND DEVERBAL USES, WHILE / WHEN / SINCE -ING (Reduced clauses), GENITIVE / ACCUSATIVE CASE (GERUNDS/-ING PARTICIPLES, 4. 4. 1. A separate page deals with verbs that are followed by the gerund. You can also use an infinitive as the subject, the complement, or the object of a sentence. The gerund looks exactly the same as a present participle, but it is useful to understand the difference between the two. Learning to use gerunds and infinitives can feel a bit overwhelming at first. 3. A to-infinitive can be the subject complement after "be": What is essential is to maintain a healthy diet. Since a gerund often acts as a noun, it takes the place of a noun in a sentence as well, namely as subject, direct object, subject complement, subject of preposition. The –ing form is commonly used to create nouns and verbs.When used as a noun, it is considered a gerund. Both gerunds and infinitives can be used as the subject or the complement of a sentence. * "IT" AS A PREPARATORY SUBJECT OR OBJECT, 6. You can check whether "to" is a preposition or part of the infinitive. Gerunds and infinitives are both verb forms that can function as nouns, and, as such, they are both often used as the objects of “main” verbs. It is important to recognise that the word "to" is a preposition in these cases because it must be followed by a gerund. His problem is not coming to class on time. Gerunds Examples: My cat’s favorite activity is sleeping. One of life's pleasures is having breakfast in bed. In this case, it can be used as the subject or object of the sentence. Success is never getting to the bottom of your to-do list. The Gerund Can be Used after Certain Expressions. Some verbs are followed by gerunds as objects. Since it is a verb, it can not be qualified by an adjective, nor preceded by an article, but, like other forms of the verb, it can be modified by an adverb and take a complement . One of his duties is attending meetings. The four types of gerunds and gerund phrases follow: 1. Some verbs, however, can only be followed by infinitives and not gerunds. In many cases, we can use either the infinitive or the gerund in addition to “standard” nouns. Would you like to walk instead of taking the bus? As the object of a sentence, it is more difficult to choose between a gerund or an infinitive. Gerunds can be made negative by adding "not.". A gerund, which functions as a noun, can consist of a single word or a phrase. In the following sentences, gerunds sound more natural and would be more common in everyday English. List of Verbs Followed by Gerunds, 6. This is also true of certain expressions ending in a preposition, for example the expressions in spite of & there's no point in.