Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Blogging Term Project

Recently on our midterm exam we had a question about infinitives. I was confused on the test because I did not think that we had been taught about infinitives and their proper uses. Infinitives are a type of verb that needs the word to in front of it, because without it the verb is to weak to stand on its own. Ex. We need to go to the store.

There is another way to change a verb to make it strong enough for a sentence, and that is making it into a gerundive.A gerundive is a verb with –ing at the end of it. A gerundive may take the form of verbal adjectives, verbal adverbs, or finite verbs. So instead of the example of “We need to go to the store,” one could say “We are going to the store.” Take a quiz here to find out if you have the skills to differentiate between infinitives and gerunds.

One special type of infinitive is the split infinitive. Captain Kirk said on the Starship Enterprise “To boldly go where no man has gone before.” This is actually incorrect and should be written as “To go boldly…” This is one of the most famous examples, but there are many others. Split infinitives have become more common in writing over the years and for the sake of linguistic style many writers get away with it. I personally like it. To passionately pursue, it just sounds so wonderful.


  1. I was also confused about the infitives on the midterm, but used my ever-so-useful dictionary to help me out! Your post really clarifies them for me, though, so thank you! Additionally...I agree that split infinitives sound better sometimes! Personally, I prefer "to boldly go" as opposed to "to go boldly." It just seems to give it that little something extra!

  2. Interesting post Billie.

    You're right too to explain about gerunds. We noted that also (infinitives) when we talked about gerunds in class.

  3. Sarah.Rachel: the class where we spoke about infinitives was all the way at the beginning, the first class, when we did parts of speech (admittedly that feels like a long time ago!).