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Finite clauses in passive voice Options
You know who I am
Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 1:05:07 PM

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Hey guys.

As you know, a finite verb is a verb that shows tense, number and person, and a non-finite verb doesn't show any of those.

I would love
to do it

I would love = finite clause
to do it = non-finite clause

However, in a passive voice's structure, how do we describe them?

I was sent to kill the humanity


I was sent = finite clause?
To kill the humanity = non-finite clause.

I = pronoun subject
was sent = finite verb-phrase?
to kill the humanity = non-finite verb-phrase.




I am the way, and the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through Me. - John 14:6
Cosms Taaba
Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 2:21:42 PM

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"I would love to do it".

Only the first verb (would) is finite; "love" is non-finite. "to do it" is not a verb but an adverbial infinitive clause of purpose.

Similar treatment for: I was sent to kill the humanity.
FROSTY X RIME
Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 2:34:01 PM

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Cosms is absolutely correct.

The finite verbs are in bold in the following sentences, and the non-finite verbs are underlined:

Verbs appear in almost all sentences.
This sentence is illustrating finite and non-finite verbs.
The dog will have to be trained well.
Tom promised to try to do the work.

In many languages (including English), there can be just one finite verb at the root of each clause (unless the finite verbs are coordinated), whereas the number of non-finite verbs can reach up to five or six, or even more, e.g.

He was believed to have been told to have himself examined.

Finite verbs can appear in dependent clauses as well as independent ones:

John said that he enjoyed reading.
Something you make yourself seems better than something you buy.



Definite Verb and Non-finite Verb

What should be shall be-The fellowship of the ring-
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 4:59:09 PM

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I told you you would get different opinions! Anxious

In my opinion (and that of many grammars):
The main verb in "I would love to do it" is the verb-phrase "would love" - the subjunctive (or conditional) mood of the verb "love". That is finite.

Finite verb - n
Contrasted with NON-FINITE. Verbs and verb phrases having tense, and clauses and sentences containing them, can be described as finite.
Oxford Dictionary of English Grammar

"To do it" is an infinitive phrase. It is a noun phrase. It says what you would love.

It cannot be a clause, as it does not contain a finite verb nor a subject.

Clause - noun
Clauses are groups of words that contain both a subject and a predicate. Farlex Grammar
1. Grammar A group of words containing a subject and a predicate and forming part of a compound or complex sentence. American Heritage
1. Grammar A group of words containing a subject and a predicate and forming part of a compound or complex sentence. Collins English Dictionary
1A unit of grammatical organization next below the sentence in rank and in traditional grammar said to consist of a subject and predicate Oxford Dictionary

**********
In "I was sent to kill humanity", the main verb-phrase is "was sent", which is the passive, past tense of the verb "send". It is finite.
"To kill humanity" is a noun-phrase.

It cannot be a clause, as it does not contain a subject or finite verb.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
tunaafi
Posted: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 9:19:15 PM

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:

In my opinion (and that of many grammars):
The main verb in "I would love to do it" is the verb-phrase "would love" - the subjunctive (or conditional) mood of the verb "love". That is finite.

I don't think you'll find many modern grammars that would call would love either subjunctive or conditional 'moods'. In fact, I don't think you'll find any that would admit the existence of a conditional mood in English.

The subjunctive forms (all persons) of LOVE are:

present:
simple: love; continuous: be loving; perfect: have loved.
past: loved; continuous: were loving; perfect: had loved.

The continuous forms are extremely rare indeed.

In I would love, only would, a modal verb, is finite. 'love' is the bare infinitive (non-finite) part of the verb LOVE.


Far away is close at hand in images of elsewhere – The Master of Paddington.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Thursday, March 16, 2017 12:54:26 AM

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Hello tunaafi.

I realise that your study of linguistics tends to use other nomenclature - and use words from English grammar to mean other things than they mean in English Grammar.
I'm also sure that you can find grammar books to quote which say the opposite.
These are not wrong - they are another way of looking at the subject.

However, traditional English grammar is not linguistics.

It is similar to the subject of tenses.
In traditional English grammar, "I will go" is the future tense of "go".
According to linguistic theory, there is no future tense in English. (I've no idea how 'will go' is explained away.)

Tenses and moods are not ONLY indicated by inflected endings in traditional English grammar - 'will have gone', 'had gone', 'would have gone' etc are all "forms of a verb indicating time and the way the action is viewed" and show whether it is real, unreal or possible.

Quote:
Conditional Sentences
Conditional sentences are used to describe hypothetical scenarios that require a certain condition or conditions to be met. They use what’s known as the conditional mood and are generally constructed using if to identify the conditions that must be met.

Farlex Grammar Book (the most recently published one I know)

Quote:
We most commonly use the subjunctive mood to express desires or wishes; to express commands, suggestions, requests, or statements of necessity; or to describe hypothetical outcomes that depend on certain conditions. . .
To create the second conditional, we use the past simple tense after the if clause, followed by would, could or might + the bare infinitive for the result of the condition.

Farlex Grammar Book - Subjunctive Mood

There are MANY ways of stating a hypothetical situation, not only the inflections (which are actually pretty rare these days).

"I would love . . ." is hypothetical. It's not indicative.
Though possibly not stated in the sentence, it depends on certain conditions (If you invite me, if I could, if I may, etc)
It is a conditional, a sub-category of the subjunctives.

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
You know who I am
Posted: Thursday, March 16, 2017 2:36:03 PM

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I just love the way that Drag0n explains things by showing us sources, haha.
Also, I agree with him, saying that in "I would love to do it" "would" is the finite verb makes sense, for would is the only verb that will define the tense of the clause; however, a modals can't stand alone, so how would you define a non-finite and finite clause following this idea? I would love to do it (I would = finite clause?) It doesn't make sense, so I'd rather follow this idea: I would love to do it (I would love = finite clause formed by a subject (I) and a finite verb-phrase (would love)), (to do it = non-finite clause).

I am the way, and the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through Me. - John 14:6
tunaafi
Posted: Thursday, March 16, 2017 4:10:23 PM

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:
Hello tunaafi.

I realise that your study of linguistics tends to use other nomenclature - and use words from English grammar to mean other things than they mean in English Grammar.

I am not sure quite what you mean by that, Drag0. I certainly don't understand the difference between English grammar and English Grammar.

I do have an interest in linguistics, but most of my career since I left university has been as a practising teacher

Quote:
However, traditional English grammar is not linguistics.


I really don't understand that.

Quote:

In traditional English grammar, "I will go" is the future tense of "go".
According to linguistic theory, there is no future tense in English. (I've no idea how 'will go' is explained away.)


Will is one of nine core modals, all of which can indicate a degree of future certainty.

Quote:

Conditional sentences are used to describe hypothetical scenarios that require a certain condition or conditions to be met. They use what’s known as the conditional mood and are generally constructed using if to rely on such publishers as Cambridge University Press, Longmans, Macmillans, Oxford University Press, etc..identify the conditions that must be met.[/color]


I know of no reputable grammar published in the last fifty years that talks about a conditional mood.


Quote:
Farlex Grammar Book (the most recently published one I know)

With all due (literally) respect to the Farlex Grammar Book, I do not accept this as a reputable grammar. As far as British English is concerned, I prefer works by internationally recognised authorities published by Cambridge University Press, Longmans, MacMillans, Oxford University Press, etc

Quote:
We most commonly use the subjunctive mood to express desires or wishes; to express commands, suggestions, requests, or statements of necessity; or to describe hypothetical outcomes that depend on certain conditions. . .
To create the second conditional, we use the past simple tense after the if clause, followed by would, could or might + the bare infinitive for the result of the condition.

Farlex Grammar Book - Subjunctive Mood



Fine. That does not claim that 'would' is part of a subjunctive or conditional mood.


Quote:
It is a conditional, a sub-category of the subjunctives.

'Conditional is not a sub-category of the subjunctive in any grammar that I have ever met.

Far away is close at hand in images of elsewhere – The Master of Paddington.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Thursday, March 16, 2017 7:09:58 PM

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I am not about to argue.

We disagree on terms and nomenclature, as we obviously learned grammar in different 'schools'.
I learned grammar (yes - more than fifty years ago) from grammar books which used very specific terminology. This is what I refer to as 'traditional English grammar. (The capital G was a mistake, sorry.)
Strangely enough, the Farlex Grammar Book seems to use the same terminology and say (in most cases) exactly what I learned.

You obviously learned grammar from different sources.

I'm going to give a few sentences from the Farlex Grammar - not from my memory or opinion or knowledge.
Sentences I write (my thoughts, opinions and conclusions) are in black.

Main article
Quote:
Subjunctive Mood

The subjunctive mood refers to verbs that are used to describe hypothetical or non-real actions, events, or situations. This is in comparison to the indicative mood, which is used to express factual, non-hypothetical information.
We most commonly use the subjunctive mood to express desires or wishes; to express commands, suggestions, requests, or statements of necessity; or to describe hypothetical outcomes that depend on certain conditions.


Sub-heading within the article on the Subjunctive Mood:
Quote:
Conditional Sentences

Conditional sentences are used to describe hypothetical scenarios that require a certain condition or conditions to be met. They use what’s known as the conditional mood and are generally constructed using if to identify the conditions that must be met.


Sub-sub-heading within the article on Subjunctive Mood
Quote:
Third Conditional

To form the third conditional, we use the past perfect tense for the if conditional clause, and would/could/should/might have + the past participle of the verb for the hypothetical outcome.


***************
"Would + past participle" are verbs used to describe the hypothetical outcome here. ("Would + bare infinitive" are verbs which describe a hypothetical outcome in the future.)
"We most commonly use the subjunctive mood to express . . .; or to describe hypothetical outcomes."
"The subjunctive mood refers to verbs that are used to describe hypothetical or non-real actions, events, or situations."


Mood is not only shown by inflections - but also by other things, including modal auxiliary verbs.

mood n
1. (Grammar) grammar a category of the verb or verbal inflections that expresses semantic and grammatical differences, including such forms as the indicative, subjunctive, and imperative
Collins English Dictionary

1. a category or set of categories of the verb serving typically to indicate the attitude of the speaker toward what is being said, as in expressing a fact, possibility, wish, or command, and indicated by inflection of the verb or by the use of syntactic devices, as modal auxiliaries: the indicative, imperative, and subjunctive moods. Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary

***************
In my opinion, from these data:
The conditional mood is described as a sub-category of the subjunctive mood.
"Would do", "would love" and so on are forms of the verb (do, love) using a modal auxiliary verb to show their hypothetical or conditional nature.
This is the definition of subjunctive in the dictionaries quoted earlier.



Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Audiendus
Posted: Friday, March 17, 2017 8:29:01 AM
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Drag0nspeaker,

Even if we accept that there is a conditional mood in English, I think we must be careful to distinguish this from a conditional construction (1st, 2nd, 3rd conditional etc). Not all conditional constructions use 'conditional' moods. For example:

If it rains, the ground gets wet. [zero conditional]
If I go out, I will get wet. [first conditional]

On the question of finite verbs: Although I largely follow 'traditional' grammar, I would call only the auxiliary verb finite in "I will go", "I have gone" etc. If you treat "will go" and "have gone" as single (finite) verb-phrases, how would you describe the verbs in bold below – a separate infinitive, or part of a finite verb-phrase?

I did tell you.
He will keep interrupting! [= he persists in interrupting]
The situation can, and will, change.
I said that I might attend the meeting, not that I definitely would.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Friday, March 17, 2017 11:04:19 AM

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Hello Audiendus.
Good points.

As I see it, yes - in "If it rains, the ground gets wet" there is no doubt, it's not a hypothetical statement. It has rained and the ground got wet; it will rain and the ground will get wet. "Gets" is the present tense of 'get', used to show a 'general, habitual or regularly occurring' action.

In "If I were to go out now, I would get wet", there is doubt about me going out. The verb 'would get' is one conditional form of 'get'. (There are others - 'could get', 'might get' and so on.)

***********
In your other sentences, the MAIN verb - the one which is the main action of the statement - is the stressed one in each.

I see:
I did tell you - I did.
'tell you' is an infinitive phrase, and is the object of the main verb 'do'.
I did it.

In each, the second verbs (the ones you have marked in bold) are a complement or an object to the main thought - do, persist, be able to, and so on. They are separate infinitives.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Audiendus
Posted: Friday, March 17, 2017 7:49:04 PM
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Thanks, Drag0nspeaker. In my last two examples:

Quote:
The situation can, and will, change.
I said that I might attend the meeting, not that I definitely would.

would you say that "change" and "attend" have a dual function – (a) as part of the verb-forms "will change" (future) and "would attend" (future-in-the-past), and (b) as infinitive complements of the modals "can" and "might" respectively?
tunaafi
Posted: Saturday, March 18, 2017 5:02:17 AM

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Drag0nspeaker wrote:
we obviously learned grammar in different 'schools'.


I doubt it. I was at school from 1951 to 1964.

Quote:
The subjunctive mood refers to verbs that are used to describe hypothetical or non-real actions, events, or situations. This is in comparison to the indicative mood, which is used to express factual, non-hypothetical information.
We most commonly use the subjunctive mood to express desires or wishes; to express commands, suggestions, requests, or statements of necessity; or to describe hypothetical outcomes that depend on certain conditions.


Fine.

Quote:
They use what’s known as the conditional mood and are generally constructed using if to identify the conditions that must be met.


It is not known as 'the conditional mood' to most grammarians, traditional or modern.

Quote:
Mood is not only shown by inflections - but also by other things, including modal auxiliary verbs.


The grammatical category of mood is used of the subjunctive, indicative and (traditionally) imperative and infinitive. Modal verbs are a different way of expressing ideas otherwise expressed by mood.

Quote:
mood n
1. (Grammar) grammar a category of the verb or verbal inflections that expresses semantic and grammatical differences, including such forms as the indicative, subjunctive, and imperative
Collins English Dictionary[/size

1. a category or set of categories of the verb serving typically to indicate the attitude of the speaker toward what is being said, as in expressing a fact, possibility, wish, or command, and indicated by inflection of the verb or by the use of syntactic devices, as modal auxiliaries: the indicative, imperative, and subjunctive moods. [size=3]Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary


Fine.

Quote:
The conditional mood is described as a sub-category of the subjunctive mood.


By the Farlex grammar, perhaps. Not by any major grammarian.


Quote:
"Would do", "would love" and so on are forms of the verb (do, love) using a modal auxiliary verb to show their hypothetical or conditional nature.
This is the definition of subjunctive in the dictionaries quoted earlier.


They are no more 'forms of the verbs' DO or LOVE than can/could/may/moght/must/shall/should/will/would/want to/hope to/etc do/love.



Far away is close at hand in images of elsewhere – The Master of Paddington.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Saturday, March 18, 2017 12:09:06 PM

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I will accept that we differ.

When I was at school, the subjunctive was not mentioned.
All these - including phrases like "If I were rich . . ." were taught as the "conditional mood".
I only learned later that sentences like "I wish I were rich" were considered subjunctive (as there is not actual 'condition').

I was taught that this conditional mood (which I later learned had actually two parts - the conditional itself and the broader category, the subjunctive) was shown in various ways including inflection and the use of modals:

mood
1. a category or set of categories of the verb serving typically to indicate the attitude of the speaker toward what is being said, as in expressing a fact, possibility, wish, or command, and indicated by inflection of the verb or by the use of syntactic devices, as modal auxiliaries: the indicative, imperative, and subjunctive moods.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary

It is the way I was taught.
It makes sense to me.
It is obviously the way these lexicographers and grammarians were taught.
It is not the way you were taught.
I don't say you're wrong - but the nomenclature we use differs.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
tunaafi
Posted: Saturday, March 18, 2017 1:27:59 PM

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A slight digression.

The future tense

If people wish to refer to forms with will = bare infinitive as the English future tense, that is up to them. Learners, however, should be aware that there are four problems with this way of looking at will:

1. Will frequently does not refer to the future:

a. John left three hours ago, so he will be home by now.
b. John will call me when I am at work no matter how many times I ask him not to.

2. All the modals can refer to future situations. Will is no more a 'pure' future than any other modal.

Trump will go for a second term. The speaker is certain.
Trump may go for a second term. The speaker is not certain.

3. Most academic writers in the last half century accept that English has no future tense.

4. There are at least five common ways of expressing futurity in English. (not counting other modals). To single out the fourth in the list below as 'the future tense'seems to have little justification.

I fly back to Prague next Thursday.
I'/I am flying back to Prague next Thursday.
I'm/I am going to fly back to Prague next Thursday.
I'll/I will/shall fly back to Prague next Thursday.
I'll/I will/shall be flying back to Prague next Thursday
.

There is even less justification for considering would a subjunctive or conditional (tense or mood), but I'll leave that for the moment.

Far away is close at hand in images of elsewhere – The Master of Paddington.
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