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A A ENGLISH GRAMMAR

Infinitive clauses
Lesson code: 11A9-P229-CXG8 INTERMEDIATE

1 Presentation 1
An infinitive clause is part of a sentence with a verb in the infinitive form. The infinitive form is
sometimes without `to', and we form negative infinitives with `not to' + verb. Study the table below.

Structure/Type Examples
verb + infinitive or verb + object + infinitive Jake loves to visit museums.
(after verbs such as advise, allow, ask, expect, I don't want you to read my emails.
force, get, hate, like, love, invite, need, pay, I advised him not to come to the party. But he
persuade, tell, want) came anyway.

Infinitive clauses that function as the subject of To make mistakes is human.


a sentence To say that he was here is simply not true.
(usually formal or old-fashioned English) In informal or neutral English, we say:
It's human to make mistakes.
It's simply not true to say that he was here.

noun + infinitive Do you have a pen to write with?


I'd like something to drink.

Infinitive clauses that explain `why' we do He opened the box to see what was inside.
something He got home early to cook dinner.
They went to the station to buy a ticket.

verb + object + infinitive without `to' Can you help me make dinner?
(after the verbs help, let, make, watch, see, I saw him leave the house.
hear, have) I won't let you stay.
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Infinitive clauses
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2 Practice 1
Complete each sentence using one of the clauses below.

call my name to be at home all day to book a room


to drink coffee at night to leave early to listen to
to see who was outside to stay at his house to write with

1. If you want to get to work on time, it's a good idea .


2. I opened the curtains .
3. I don't have anything . Can you lend me your pen?
4. I expected Emma , so I was surprised that nobody answered the door.
5. is not a good idea, especially if you want to wake up early.
6. I called the hotel .
7. I couldn't hear him because it was too noisy.
8. I downloaded some music on the train.
9. Mr Yamaguchi invited us during our visit to Japan.

3 Practice 2
Make complete sentences like in the example:

1. It’s normal to work every day . (it/be/normal/work/every day)


2. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (I/show/you/best way/paint/your walls)
3. I'm bored. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (you/have/any books/read ?)
4. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (Yesterday/Joanna/allow/me/borrow/her car)
5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (you/want/me/call/you ?)
6. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (can/you/tell/Peter/not/call/me/anymore ?)
7. I'm hungry. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (you/have/anything/eat ?)
8. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (I/prefer/not/use/email/keep in touch/with friends)

4 Practice 3
Complete the sentences below with an object + infinitive. Try to make true sentences about you.

1. I asked . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2. I saw . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
3. I let . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
4. I made . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
5. I couldn't hear . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
6. I wanted . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
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Infinitive clauses
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5 Presentation 2 `for' + noun/pronoun + infinitive


If an infinitive has its own subject, we sometimes use the structure `for + noun/pronoun + infinitive'.

Type of infinitive Examples


Infinitive clauses after certain It's important for you to arrive early. (= It's important that you
adjectives arrive early.)
It's necessary for him to stop.
It's bad for you to eat too much chocolate.

noun + infinitive It's a good idea for him to arrive early.


I'd like something for my son to drink.

Infinitive clauses that explain I made this sandwich for you to eat on the train.
`why' we do something We had to go to the station for John to buy a ticket. (= We had
to go to the station so that John could buy a ticket.)

6 Practice 4
Complete each sentence with `for + noun/pronoun + infinitive'. In some of the sentences, you will
need to change subject pronouns to object pronouns like in the example.

1. It was impossible for us to see (we/see) anything in the dark streets.


2. It's important (you/go) to bed early if you want to wake up before 8am.
3. Do you have anything (my friend/drink)?
4. I bought some toys . (the children/play with)
5. She couldn't cook, so she bought some eggs . (I/boil)
6. There's no time (Roger/help) you. He's very busy.
7. It's necessary (you/eat) slowly. Otherwise, you will get ill.
8. It's difficult (Mr Harris/meet) you today. He has a lot of appointments.
9. It's unhealthy (she/sit) at her desk all day long. She needs to do some
exercise.
10. I downloaded some music (you/listen to) on the train.
11. The office is closed tomorrow, so please tell her that it's not necessary (she/come).
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