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    Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #5584: Verb + -ing or to. (1)
    > Other English exercises on the same topic: Find the correct tense [Change theme]
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    Verb + -ing or to. (1)

    Verb + -ing or to... (1)


    When one verb follows another verb, the structure is usually verb + -ing or verb + to...


    Verb + -ing

    • They denied stealing the money.

    • I enjoy going out.

    Often we use -ing for an action that happens before the first verb or at the same time:

    stealing <— denied


    Verb + to...

    • They decided to steal the money.

    • I want to go out.

    Often we use to... for an action that follows the first verb

    decided -> to steal

    want —>to go

    Some verbs can be followed by -ing or to... with a difference of meaning:



    I remember doing something = I did it and now I remember this.

    You remember doing something after you have done it:

    • I’m absolutely sure I locked the door. I clearly remember locking it. (=I locked it, and now I remember this)

    • He could remember driving along the road just before the accident happened, but he couldn't remember the accident itself.

    I remembered to do something = I remembered that I had to do it, and so I did it.

    You remember to do something before you do it:

    • I remembered to lock the door when I left but I forgot to shut the windows.

    (= I remembered that I had to lock the door and so I locked it)

    • Please remember to post the letter.

    (= don't forget to post it)


    I regret doing something = I did it and now I'm sorry about it:

    • I now regret saying what I said. I shouldn’t have said it.

    I regret to say / to tell you / to inform you

    = I'm sorry that I have to say (etc.):

    • (from a formal letter) We regret to inform you that we are unable to offer you the job.

    Go on

    Go on doing something = continue doing the same thing:

    • The minister went on talking for two hours.

    • We must change our ways. We can't go on living like this.

    Go on to do something = do or say something new:

    • After discussing the economy, the minister then went on to talk about foreign policy.

    Begin/ start/ intend/ continue/ bother

    These verbs can be followed by -ing or to... with little or no difference in meaning. So you can say:

    • It has started raining, or It has started to rain.

    • John intends buying a house, or John intends to buy...

    • Don’t bother locking the door, or Don't bother to lock...

    But normally we do not use –ing after-ing:

    • It’s starting to rain. (Not it’s starting raining)

    Put the verb into the correct form, -ing or to:

    English exercise "Verb + -ing or to. (1)" created by felin with The test builder
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    1. They denied the money.
    2. I don't enjoy very much.
    3. I can't afford out tonight. I haven't got enough money.
    4. Has it stopped yet?
    5. Can you remind me some coffee when we go out?
    6. Why do you keep me questions? Can't you leave me alone?
    7. I refuse any more questions.
    8. One of the boys admitted the window.
    9. The boy's father promised for the window to be repaired.
    10. Nathalie was having dinner when the phone rang. She didn't answer the phone; she just carried on .
    11. How did the thief get into the house?' 'I forgot the window.'
    12. I can’t go on here any more. I want a different job.
    13. Julia has been ill but now she's beginning better.
    14. When you see Mandy, remember her my regards, won’t you?
    15. Someone must have taken my bag. I clearly remember it by the window and now it has gone.
    16. I believe that what I said was fair. I don’t regret it.
    17. (After a driving a test) I regret you that you have failed the test.

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