Verb + to-infinitive
|John:||I’ve decided to have a round of golf. I’ve arranged to play with Steve.|
|Susan:||But you promised to come shopping this afternoon. I want to look for a new sofa.|
After some verbs we can use a to-infinitive, e.g. decided to have, arranged to play. Here are a few more examples:
• She expects to see results immediately.
• Judy can afford to fly to Los Angeles.
• We agreed to join the club with them.
• They have offered to help me with the books.
• John is hoping to get promoted soon.
We can put not before the to-infinitive.
• She expects not to see any mess when she returns.
• Judy can afford not to work.
• Somebody might choose not to jump.
With some other verbs we use an ing-form, not a to-infinitive.
• Mary has finished writing her essay.
• John stopped singing when she came in.
SEEM and APPEAR
We can use a to-infinitive after seem and appear.
• His boss seemed to be very friendly.
• The book appears to have some pages missing.
• The bookseller didn’t seem to know much about literature.
We can use a continuous or a perfect to-infinitive.
• Continuous: Sally seems to be working even harder now.
• Perfect: Mike appeared to have sprained his ankle.
TEND, MANAGE and FAIL
We use tend to for things that usually happen.
• I tend to travel in summer months. (= I usually travel during summer.)
We use manage to for being able to do something.
• He managed to read the whole book before the exam. (He was able to finish reading the whole book.)
We use fail to for things that don’t happen.
• He failed to pass the exam. (He didn’t pass his exam.)
HE PROMISED TO GO v. HIS PROMISE TO GO
Some nouns can come before a to-infinitive. Compare the following sentences:
|VERB + to-infinitive:||• John promised to go shopping. But then he arranged to play golf.|
|NOUN + to-infinitive:||• John forgot about his promise to go shopping. Susan found out about his arrangement to play golf.|
Here are some nouns we can use: agreement, arrangement, decision, demand, desire, failure, offer, plan, promise, refusal, tendency, threat