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want the car repaired.

English grammar help. Grammar questions from ESL learners

Moderator: Alan

want the car repaired.

Postby googl » Fri Oct 08, 2004 9:38 pm

Dear Alan,

I want the car repaired.

Is this a causative construct? If yes, then which verbs can be used with causative? (I heard only have and get are possible) If no, then what is this?
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Postby Alan » Sun Oct 10, 2004 3:59 am

Not really causative in the usual sense, since an infinitive has been ellipted here that could not occur in a true causative construction. That is, the sentence could be expanded to

I want the car TO BE repaired.

Cf., however, unacceptable

*I had the car TO BE repaired.

or absurd

!I got the car TO BE repaired.
Last edited by Alan on Mon Oct 11, 2004 9:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby googl » Mon Oct 11, 2004 7:11 am

Is this the small clause? (I mean is it the same structure as with I found [the job (to be) boring]?)
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Postby Alan » Mon Oct 11, 2004 9:34 am

Certainly, they are comparable, although of course 'to be' in

I found the job to be boring.

is a full verb, while in

I want the car to be repaired.

it is an auxiliary.
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