Why do we say "reduced to asking"?

Help, tips and advice in teaching English. Classroom problems, lesson planning, career advice, staff...

Moderator: Susan

Why do we say "reduced to asking"?

Unread postby Helen B » 08 Apr 2008, 10:53

Why do we say 'reduced to asking' someone something, rather than 'reduced to ask'? What are the grammatical rules behind this structure?
Helen B
Registered Member
 
Posts: 1
Joined: 08 Apr 2008, 10:29

Re: Ask and asking

Unread postby Lucy » 10 Apr 2008, 18:50

Dear Helen,

The expression 'reduced to' can be followed by a noun phrase; an illustration is 'he was reduced to a quivering wreck'. In this sentence, quivering is an adjective and wreck is a noun.

The verb form "-ing" can act as a noun; this explains the use of the word "asking" in your example.

It can also be considered that "to" is a preposition in your example. Prepositions are followed by the "-ing" form; as in by doing, after saying.

Kind regards,

Lucy
User avatar
Lucy
Moderator
 
Posts: 599
Joined: 13 Jan 2004, 16:09
Location: France
Status: Teacher Trainer


Return to TEFL Help Desk

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google Adsense [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 15 guests