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Infinitives and Infinitive Phrases

An infinitive contains to and a present-tense verb, as in to run, to seek, to find. An infinitive phrase contains an infinitive and related words, as in to run in a race, to seek the answer, to find your lost book.

You can achieve sentence variety by beginning your sentences with infinitives or infinitive phrases. Note how each of these sentences is revised by using an infinitive or an infinitive phrase.

A long walk might relax you.
To relax, try taking a long walk.

The lieutenant wanted volunteers with courage, so he explained the dangerous mission.
To find volunteers with courage, the lieutenant explained the dangerous mission.

 

Quick Check  
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Which sentence contains an infinitive phrase?

Growing leeks and artichokes is often difficult.
To grow leeks and artichokes is often difficult






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