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Definition of infinitive
InfinitiveInfinitive In*fin"i*tive, n. [L. infinitivus: cf. F.
infinitif. See Infinite.]
Unlimited; not bounded or restricted; undefined.
Infinitive mood (Gram.), that form of the verb which merely
names the action, and performs the office of a verbal
noun. Some grammarians make two forms in English: (a)
The simple form, as, speak, go, hear, before which to is
commonly placed, as, to speak; to go; to hear. (b) The
form of the imperfect participle, called the infinitive in
-ing; as, going is as easy as standing.
Note: With the auxiliary verbs may, can, must, might, could,
would, and should, the simple infinitive is expressed
without to; as, you may speak; they must hear, etc. The
infinitive usually omits to with the verbs let, dare,
do, bid, make, see, hear, need, etc.; as, let me go;
you dare not tell; make him work; hear him talk, etc.
Note: In Anglo-Saxon, the simple infinitive was not preceded
by to (the sign of modern simple infinitive), but it
had a dative form (sometimes called the gerundial
infinitive) which was preceded by to, and was chiefly
employed in expressing purpose. See Gerund, 2.
Note: The gerundial ending (-anne) not only took the same
form as the simple infinitive (-an), but it was
confounded with the present participle in -ende, or
-inde (later -inge).
Infinitive In*fin"i*tive, n. (Gram.)
An infinitive form of the verb; a verb in the infinitive
mood; the infinitive mood.
Infinitive In*fin"i*tive, adv. (Gram.)
In the manner of an infinitive mood.
Meaning of infinitive from wikipedia
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