He wanted to see her therealone yesterday.
He told me about seeing her there aloneyesterday.
If a verb requires a prepositional object, the preposition is re-
tained by the verbal when the object happens to be separated from it.
e.g. We've got a lot to talk about.
I'm not accustomed to being spoken to in that way.
Yet there is a difference between the two verbals and the finite
forms. With finite forms, the secondary parts of the sentence usu-
ally follow the predicate, but they may also have front position.
e.g. That year winter set in early.
To relieve my feeling, I wrote a letter to Robert.
With the infinitive and the ing-form, the secondary parts are
always found in post-position. The verbals may be preceded only by
certain adverbs. Yet even instances of this are infrequent,
e.g. Critically to examine newcomers was one of the amusements
at the boarding house.
My father was the coach of our swimming team, though his
poor health prevented him from ever going into the water.
With finite forms, the negatives not and never normally ei-
ther follow them or are placed within analytical forms of various
kinds of compound predicates.
e.g. He was not there.
He has not done it.
He should not do it.
He did not seem tired.
With verbals, the negatives not and never always precede
them, even if they are analytical forms.
e.g. I had learned a long time ago not to show what I felt.
He went on drinking his coffee, not saying anything more.
She knew that he had gone never to return.
I have kept him out of your life: keep him now out of mine
by never mentioning him again.
§ 171. In addition to the above described features which the
infinitive and the ing-form have in common, each of the two ver-
bals possesses peculiarities of its own.
The infinitive is generally preceded by the particle to, but. in
certain functions it is used without it, and in still other functions
the use of the particle is optional. The use or the absence of the
particle will be considered in connection with each of the func-
tions of the infinitive.
Note. The infinitive and the particle to may be separated from each other by
the insertion of an adverb between them, such as never, ever, fully, really, even.
This is called a split infinitive.
e.g. She was the first person to ever understand me, Frank.
I'm sorry, I made a mistake. It was a mistake to even try to help you.
However, split infinitives are very rarely found in English.
If there are two or more infinitives in the same function fol-
lowing each other, the particle to is usually used before the first
one and need not be repeated before the others.
e.g. Amy admired Lilian because she could do a lot of things —
she was said, for instance, to dance and skate very well.
Sometimes, however, the particle to is repeated for emphasis,
to make the action of each infinitive more prominent.
e.g. The hero, when the heroine hurts his feelings, is said to feel
for a moment a wild desire of the caveman, the longing to
seize her, to drag her with him, to give her a good beating.
The infinitive may sometimes be represented by the particle to
alone. This happens when the infinitive is easily supplied from the
e.g. Joe said, "I don't think we are going to catch any fish."
"I never expect to," said Lizzy.
She would have listened if I had called her attention to it but
I had already decided not to.
Another peculiarity of the infinitive is that it may be used as
part of a phrase introduced by the conjunctive pronouns or ad-
verbs what, who, whom, which, when, where, whether, how and
how long. As most of them begin with wh-, this kind of infinitive
group may be called the wh-phrase ['dablju eic freiz].
e.g- I didn't know what to say.
I couldn't decide whether to speak or not.
§ 172. The ing-form, in its turn, has peculiarities of its own.
unliке the infinitive, it may, in certain functions, be preceded by
e.g. For anybody as clever as you are, you're not really good at
He told me that we were about to be turned out of our flat
for not payingthe rent.
The ing-form has another peculiarity: it may lose its verbal
character and become adjectivized. In this case the ing-form be-
comes devoid of the idea of action and sometimes its lexical mean-
ing is changed as compared with the meaning of the corresponding
e.g. They found his ideas very upsetting.
His erect, rather forbiddingfigure made him look old-fashi-
In the second example forbidding means 'суровый, неприступ-
ный'; it differs from the meaning of the verb to forbid ('запре-
Adjectivized ing-forms, like real adjectives, may be preceded
by adverbs of degree, such as very, rather, most, quite., how, so,
so ... as, etc.
e.g. She is always so amusing.
The results which he obtained proved to be moat striking.
Note 1. There are a number of ing-forms of this kind that are used only as ad-
jectives in present-day English,
e.g. interesting, charming, dashing, etc.
Note 2. In English there are a considerable number of nouns in -ing. They may
denote concrete things (e.g. landing 'лестничная площадка') or abstract notions,
including actions (e.g. beginning 'начало', singing 'пение, reading 'чтение').
These nouns lack the above described properties of the ing-form and, like any other
noun, may be associated with the article, definite or indefinite, with pronouns,
such as some, any, a lot of, etc, or may be modified by adjectives.
e.g. The drums were silent: the singing stopped.
"My wife had once a vegetarian bulldog," said Mr Smith with pride. "Of course.
it took some training."
I admired the dancer and asked if she ever did any real Indian dancing.
"I do a lot of travelling," he said.
She had an attack of violent sobbing.
Nouns in -ing denoting actions are called verbal nouns. They should not be
confused with the ing form proper even when they denote actions (e.g. reading
writing, walking, etc.).
§ 173.Although the participle has the same lexical meaning as
the corresponding verb, it differs considerably from the finite
forms as well as from the infinitive and the ing-form.
As the participle has only one form (see "Verbs", § 5 and Ap-
pendix), it does not possess any of the grammatical categories of
the infinitive and the ing-form. Nevertheless, this form has its
own grammatical meaning.
The grammatical meaning of the participle is closely connected
with the lexical character of the verb.
The participle is, in the main, formed from transitive verbs
and has passive meaning.
e.g. He had suits, and coats, and shirts madeto order.
Itwas a question put downby one of the correspondents.
When the participle is formed from transitive terminative
verbs, it denotes a state resulting from a previously accomplished
action. This resultant state is simultaneous with the action ex-
pressed by the predicate verb.
e.g. On arriving at the small building on the top of the mountain,
she found it locked.
Alfred, leftalone, stoodmotionless for some minutes.
A participle formed from a transitive durative verb denotes an
action; it is simultaneous with the action expressed by the predi-
e.g. Tom was the happy husband, adoring and adored,
At last the Colonel, accompaniedby his two daughters, made
his appearance in the park.
The number of participles formed from intransitive verbs is
very limited. They have active meaning and usually denote an ac-
tion preceding that of the predicate verb.
e-g.She sat downon a fallentree to have a short rest.
The house was madeof unpainted plank, gone grey now.
Sometimes the participle is formed from an intransitive mean-
ing of a polysemantic verb.
e.g.. His face was like a withered apple.
She looked at the faded photograph.
§ 174.Like the finite forms and the other two verbals, the
participle is always associated with a subject. But the means of
expressing its subject are more limited than those of expressing
the subject of the infinitive and the ing form.
The subject of the participle may be the person or thing denot-
ed by the subject (a) or the object (b) of the sentence. It may also
be expressed by the noun the participle modifies (c).
e.g. a) Suddenly touched, shecame over to the side of herfa-
ther's chair and kissed him.
b) He heard his name called.
c) A large fat man with a face shavedas smooth as marble
stood in the doorway.
As the participle is, as a rule, formed from transitive verbs
and has passive meaning, it mostly has a passive subject. But its
active subject, the doer of the action, may also be indicated in the
sentence with the help of a by-phrase.
e.g. I looked at the ceiling, painted by some 18th century artist
§ 175.The participle can be used only as a notional verb (see
the examples above and below); it never serves as a structural
word. In this respect it also differs from the finite forms and the
two other verbals.
But, like the infinitive and theing-form, the participle is widely
used as second (or third) component of analytical forms (e.g. The
letter is written. Hehas doneit. The matter has been investigated.)
§ 176.The syntactic functions of the participle in the sentence
are more restricted than those of the other two verbals. It mainly
performs the functions of the adjective.
e.g. One day he landed in Santa Domingo in tornand dusty clothes.
He stood amazedat the door of the shop.
§ 177.The participle, like the other two verbals, is, in some of
its functions, lexically and structurally dependent. For example
its use is required by the verb to have in the following pattern.
e.g. You'll never guess where I had the suit made.
The functions of the participle will be dealt with in detail below.
§ 178.The participle, like the finite forms and the two other
verbals, can be modified by secondary parts of the sentence. But
the number of those modifiers is restricted and the participle
phrase is never very extended. The secondary parts that modify
the participle usually denote the place (a), or the time (b), or the
doer of the action (c). They always follow the participle.
e.g. a) I had my suitcase put in the corner ofa third-class carriage.
b) She told me of the parcel delivered in the morning.
c) They let him know of the decision taken by the committee.
The negative not is always placed before the participle.
e.g. Margaret, notconvinced, was still arguing about it.
If the verb requires a prepositional object, the preposition is
retained by the participle when the object happens to be separated
e.g. He never uttered a word unless spoken to.
The blood in his cut seemed very dark. "You ought to have it
looked at," Isaid.
§179.The participle often becomes adjectivized. (Adjectiviza-
tion is even more typical of the participle than of the ing-form.)
It becomes devoid of the idea of action and sometimes its lexical
meaning is changed as compared with the meaning of the corre-
sponding verb (see the second and third examples below)-
e.g. On the surface my life was variedand exciting; but beneath
it was narrow.
He was an elegant gentleman though given to talking in a
gruff voice (= склонный, имеющий обыкновение).
The streets, deserted now, looked frightening (= пустые, без-
The adjectivized participle may be preceded, like a real adjec-
tive, by adverbs of degree.
e.g. Is Mrs White really very excited?
Suddenly, looking rather alarmed,she rushed out of the room.
The road was as desertedas ever.
Note 1. Some participles are used only as adjectives in present-day English,
e.g. tired, interested, accustomed and others.
Note 2. There are a number of adjectives ending in -ed which are homonymous
to participles. They are actually adjectives formed from nouns, e.g. stockinged
legs, propertied classes, a bearded face, a gifted person, a talented musician, etc.
Adjectives built up on this pattern mean 'having stockings, having property,
having a beard', etc.
§ 180.The use of all the three verbals is characterized by one
more peculiarity: the frequency of their occurrence varies greatly
in different functions. In some functions their use is extensive, in
other functions it is infrequent. At the same time, some of their
functions are found only in literary style.
In describing the various functions of the verbals, special
mention will be made of their frequency of occurrence and stylis-