to become or not become

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benchapple
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to become or not become

Unread post by benchapple » Sat May 09, 2015 10:33 am

A student asked me a question and I have no good answer for him. Can you help?
He had written "They also enable your business become more efficient."
I corrected this by inserting 'to'. Perhaps I am wrong to do so, but that sentence sounds very iffy to me.
He said that he had been told that:
"He helped him become a doctor."
"He helped him to become a doctor."
were both correct. I agreed.

What he would like is some rule to follow and I can't supply one.

I have been teaching in Serbia for 8 months and I'm an Englishman.

Thanks for any help in advance.
Ben

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Susan
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Re: to become or not become

Unread post by Susan » Sun May 10, 2015 8:57 am

Hi Ben,

Enable someone to do something: there is always the 'to' in this phrase.

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cerealkillah
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Re: to become or not become

Unread post by cerealkillah » Sun May 10, 2015 10:23 am

I agree with Susan.
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... ish/enable
"Help" requires either full infinitive or bare infinitive.
"enable" is used with full infinitive.

benchapple
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Re: to become or not become

Unread post by benchapple » Mon May 11, 2015 4:19 pm

Thank you for your responses, Susan and Serial Killer.

The only verbs I can find that take the bare infinitive are modals, 'did' and 'help'.
I should make the bed.
I must make the bed
I did make the bed.
I helped make the bed.
But
I want to make the bed.
I attempted to make the bed.

I have concluded that the rule I'm seeking is 'only after modals, did and help'
Do you concur, or are there other verbs lurking in the undergrowth that also take the bare infinitive or, as in the case of 'help', take both? A fellow teacher and I simply couldn't come up with any.

Thanks once again.
Ben.

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cerealkillah
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Re: to become or not become

Unread post by cerealkillah » Tue May 12, 2015 5:42 am

Not only for modals, I'm afraid. Make is another verb that takes the bare infinitive, but you have to be careful about the passive voice:
He made me do the washing up.
I was made to do the washing up.

What's more, there are also verbs related to senses, which can take either bare infinitive or gerund form (with a slight change of meaning):
I saw my brother cross the street.
I saw my brother crossing the street.

Then, there's also the subjunctive...

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