The verb TRY with GERUND or INFINITIVE | DailyStep English

The verb TRY with GERUND or INFINITIVE

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This is Jane Lawson's Audio Blog #100 at DailyStep English

Hello, I'm Jane at DailyStep English and welcome to my Audio Blog!

In this week's blog, I will explain how the meaning of the verb TRY changes depending on whether it is followed by the  GERUND or INFINITIVE. Then there are some free audio descriptions of all the topics in next week's DailyStep audio lessons, and at the bottom of the page you can see a video of how to use one of our lessons too. 

Here is Audio Word Study #043 from Jane Lawson at DailyStep.com
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TRY - Gerund or infinitive?

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Most verbs in English always take either the gerund or the infinitive. You need to learn which one is correct, and then always use that form. Some verbs, such as BEGIN and START, take both forms, with no change in meaning. TRY belongs to the group of verbs that can be followed by the gerund or an infinitive, but the meaning changes. You need to make sure you use the correct structure or you will end up saying something that you do not mean! Take a look at these examples:

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1. I tried to stop him from leaving but it was too late. Now we don’t know where he is! (note: it was impossible to stop him from leaving.)

2. Could you please try to open this jar for me? I can’t unscrew the lid.(note: it is difficult to unscrew the lid of the jar.)

3. He always tries to be as punctual as possible, but sometimes he is still late. (note: he finds it difficult to be punctual.)

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4. I have decided to try using less salt on my food, as it is healthier. (note: maybe it will taste good with less salt.)

5. As you never have time for breakfast, perhaps you should try getting up earlier in the morning. (note: perhaps getting up earlier would be a better idea.)

6. Have you ever tried snowboarding? I think you would love it! (note: snowboarding is something that you might enjoy.)

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As you can see, in sentences 1-3 TRY is followed by the INFINITIVE (to stop, to open and to be). In these first three sentences, the verb in the infinitive was difficult or impossible to achieve.

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In sentences 4-6, TRY is followed by the GERUND (using, getting up and snowboarding). In these second three sentences, the verb in the gerund is something to experiment with, perhaps to see if you like it or if it will have a better result.

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Let’s take a look at a longer example:

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7. While I was trying to fix my computer, I tried uninstalling the software and then reloading it, but it did not make any difference. Then I decided to try replacing the keyboard, but when I tried to remove it, I could not find the right sized tool.

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In this short paragraph, the verbs in the infinitive (to fix, to remove) are difficult or impossible, and the verbs in the gerund (uninstalling, reloading, replacing) were things that I did so that I could get a better result.

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Now, try to write your own sentences using TRY, sometimes with the gerund and sometimes with the infinitive. Make sure these sentences are true to your own life because this will help you to remember them better. That is all for Audio Word Study #043 on DailyStep.com.

 

If you are a subscriber to my DailyStep Audio Lessons, you can download this audio file below. The PDF is free for everyone!


Now listen to these free audio summaries of next week's DailyStep Audio Lessons. Remember to speak along with the audio to help your pronunciation. 

Level 5: Advanced Level

Expressing and reacting to emotions.

Expressing emotion and reacting  in English conversation - Advanced Audio Lessons from DailyStep EnglishSam is heartbroken after losing his dog, and blames himself entirely for its disappearance. Carol tries to make him feel better and see that positive action is needed. These 5 lessons contain loads of expressions and phrasal verbs for expressing sadness and loss, and for dealing with a heartbroken person. You will also learn how to push someone into action, and the correct intonation to express frustration and annoyance.

Level 4: High Intermediate Level
try a lesson: level 4 | niveau 4 | nivel 4 | livello 4 | レベル4 | 
레벨 4

Business telephone and meeting skills.  George Rogers has to telephone and cancel a meeting due to illness. He and his colleague try to arrange another time, but they are both rather busy! When they finally do meet, they make small talk at the start of the meeting, and then get down to business. These 5 lessons will help you in both your English skills and your business skills. You’ll also learn the importance of intonation in sounding friendly and professional.

Level 3: Intermediate Level
try a lesson: level 3 | niveau 3 | nivel 3 | livello 3 | レベル3 | 
레벨 3

Conversation about problems.  Angela is upset about getting a parking fine when in her opinion, she did not break the law. Will she manage to avoid paying the penalty charge? These 5 lessons will teach you how to describe a problem, how to express annoyance and of course, plenty of intonation! You will also learn about UK parking laws.

Level 2: Elementary Level
try a lesson: level 2 | niveau 2 | nivel 2 | livello 2 | レベル2 | 레벨 2

Talking about computers. In these 5 lessons, Peter and Joanne talk about how much they use computers, and the reasons they use them. Can you talk about how and why you use computers? These lessons will teach you how, and lots of useful computing vocabulary.

Level 1: Beginner Level
try a lesson: level 1 | niveau 1 | nivel 1 | livello 1 | レベル1 | 레벨 1

Business English.  Sam welcomes Jo to a company because she is new in her job. In these 5 lessons, you will learn how to meet people at work, and perhaps make new friends!

 More English Courses


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Best wishes,
Jane

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