The clauses in V-ing as subjects - Free english lesson
Chapter The nominal clauses in V-ing


The gerund can be accompanied by :
- A possessive determiner : His trying to please her was no use.
- A simple noun : Joe's trying to please her was no use.
- A genitive noun : Joe's trying to please her was no use.
The three sentences have the same meaning.

In the informal style, we can use the personal pronoun as object (me, you, him, ….)

We can sometimes use an infinitive clause in to as subject, rather than V-ing, however this is rare. In English, we prefer using V-ing or placing the infinitive at the end of the sentence with the help of to.
To accept was tempting. This construction is rare.
It was tempting to accept / Accepting was tempting. These constructions are the most frequent.

In order to precise which to + V-ing apply to, we will use for + noun.
For Lea / her to accept was tempting.
It was tempting for Lea / her to accept.


When the subject is placed at the end of the sentence, the construction V-ing is not used.
« It was tempting to accept » and not « It was tempting accepting ».

Remark : the set expression « It was nice meeting you » is the exception. We also say « It was nice to meet you ».


Progress in english with the story of the Lacoste family.
1 episode, 10 questions, 1 correction :