Verb patterns. Using the gerund in English

In the previous article, we became acquainted with the concept of verb patterns, and also found out how and in what situations (namely, after what words and constructions) you need to use the full infinitive form of the verbs.

The goal of this article is to understand when you need to use a verb with the ending -ing (or gerund).

Well, let’s look at this rule closer. The verb -ing is put:

  1. As a noun.

Jogging is a popular form of exercise.

  1. After certain verbs: admit, anticipate, appreciate, avoid, consider, continue, delay, deny, discuss, enjoy, escape, excuse, fancy, finish, forgive, go (for activities), imagine, involve, keep (=continue), mention, mind, miss, postpone, practise, prevent, quit, recall, recollect, report, resent, resist, risk, save, stand, suggest, tolerate, understand, etc.

They avoid discussing this topic.

Are you going to postpone meeting them forever?

  1. After verbs dislike, enjoy, hate, like, love, prefer, speaking about general preferences.

We like watching films in the cinema.

BUT: phrases would like, would love, would prefer are used with an infinitive when we mention some certain preference.

I would like to go to the cinema tonight.

  1. After such expressions as: be busy, it’s no use, it’s (no) good, it’s (not) worth, what’s the use of, can’t help, there is no point (in), can’t stand, have difficulty (in), have troubles, have a hard time, etc.

It’s no use asking her to remind you anything.

I can’t help thinking what we will do if he is right.

  1. After verbs: spend, waste, lose (money, time, etc.)

We wasted a lot of time waiting for them.

  1. After prepositions.

Are you interested in working here at all?

What do they know about living in this place?

  1. After such expressions as: look forward to, be used to, get round to, object to, in addition to, prefer (doing smth to doing smth).

I prefer going somewhere to sitting at home.

We are looking forward to meeting you.

  1. After verbs: hear, listen to, notice, see, watch, feel, describing some unfinished action. Something that we saw or heard only partly.

I listened to her speaking about her plans. (I heard only a part and don’t know the whole plans)

BUT: we use hear, listen to, notice, see, watch, feel with bare infinitive to speak about a complete action. Meaning that we saw or heard everything.

I heard her speak about their plans. (Everything they were discussing).

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