Role of infinitive in the English language

In the English grammar, the infinitive is known as the most basic form of verb, or non-finite verb, which is often preceded by “To” particle. As per rules, it doesn’t used as a main verb to express actions performed, but used as a noun, adjectives, adverbs, and infinitive clauses. Here, I am going to describe the role of infinitive in the learning of English language.

Meaning and definition of infinitive

Infinitive is a non-finite verb, widely used to perform the functions of noun, adjectives, or adverbs. It is used as a simple infinitive, infinitive phrase, or, infinitive clause to construct better sense of meaning. Further, it is also known as the most basic form of verb. It, in the sentence, plays the role of subject, or object, object complement.

Role of infinitive in the English grammar

Infinitive as a subject

As I mentioned earlier that infinitive functions as a noun and, accordingly play the role of noun in the sentence.

  • To win the gold medal in the Olympics was his ultimate goal.
  • To win
  • To work as a professor was his first choice.
  • To work

Infinitive as a subject complement

Infinitive also plays the role of predicate noun to work as a subject complement.

  • It is generally used after a linking verb.
  • The ultimate achievement in life is to stay memorable.

Infinitive as an object

As we know that object is a word used to receive the action performed by the subject.

Infinitive is widely used in the role of object in the form of basic infinitive, phrase, or infinitive clause.

  • They have already decided to go on study tour.
  • To go on study tour
  • I am doing my level best to convince him.
  • To convince him
  • She is working so hard to complete her project on time.
  • To complete her project on time
  • Company instructed not to answer the unknown numbers.
  • Not to answer the unknown numbers – object in reported speech
  • He promised to buy them a cricket kit.
  • To buy them a cricket kit.

Infinitive as an object complement

“Object complement” is always used after the direct object. But, “object” is used in the intransitive sentences after main verb.

  • They taught me to work honestly.
  • To work honestly
  • She helped children to attend regular school.
  • To attend regular school
  • He has rejected her to place his brother.
  • To place his brother

Apart from this, there is a lot of subject matter on this topic, and I will surely discuss that in the next blog.

Correct use of “but” and “yet”

Subject and object complements

Assessment of Indian democracy