An infinitive is to plus a verb form. It can be used as a noun. Examples: to be, to see, to be seen, to be eaten.
The noun infinitive can be a subject (To eat is fun.); a direct object (I like to eat.); a predicate nominative (A fun thing is to eat.); an appositive (My hope, to travel, never happened.); an object of a preposition (I want nothing but to save.)
Noun infinitives can have with them direct objects, predicate nominatives, predicate adjectives or modifiers to form what is called a infinitive phrase. Example: To eat solid foods is hard for babies. “To eat” is the noun infinitive used as the subject of the verb is, and it has its own direct object “foods” with the adjective “solid,” which together make up the infinitive phrase “to eat solid foods” serving as the subject of the sentence.
Instructions: Find the noun infinitives in the following sentences and tell how they are used.
1. To skate was his only desire.
2. I hope to enjoy retirement.
3. The team’s desire is to win.
4. Most people want to marry.
5. Their terrible goal, to kill, failed.
–For answers scroll down.
1. to skate = subject
2. to enjoy = direct object
3. to win = predicate nominative
4. to marry = direct object
5. to kill = appositive
For your convenience, all of our lessons are available on our website in our lesson archive at http://www.dailygrammar.com/archive.html. Our lessons are also available to purchase in an eBook and a Workbook format.
from Daily Grammar Lessons Blog