from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A verb form that functions as a substantive while retaining certain verbal characteristics, such as modification by adverbs, and that in English may be preceded by to, as in To go willingly is to show strength or We want him to work harder, or may also occur without to, as in She had them read the letter or We may finish today. See Usage Note at split infinitive.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The uninflected form of a verb. In English, this is usually formed with the verb stem preceded by 'to'. e.g. 'to sit'
- n. A verbal noun formed from the infinitive of a verb
- adj. Formed with the infinitive
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Unlimited; not bounded or restricted; undefined.
- n. An infinitive form of the verb; a verb in the infinitive mood; the infinitive mood.
- adv. In the manner of an infinitive mood.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- In grammar, unlimited; indefinite: noting a certain verb-form sometimes called the infinitive mode. See II.
- n. In grammar, a certain verb-form expressing the general sense of the verb without restriction in regard to person or number, as English give, German geben, French donner, Latin dare, Greek
- n. An endless quantity or number; an infinity.
- n. a name conveniently used to designate briefly the infinitive phrase consisting of the infinitive proper (for example, ‘designate,’ below) and the so-called ‘sign,’ the preposition ‘to,’ when separated by a qualifying adverb or phrase, as in ‘to briefly designate,’ ‘to readily understand,’ ‘to suddenly and completely change one's attitude.’ This use is in high disfavor with literary critics and purists who write upon the subject, but it occurs abundantly in English literature from the seventeenth century down. Nearly every ‘standard author’ is ‘guilty’ of it, as Fitzedward Hall and others have shown, and it is thoroughly established in popular speech. It is often dictated by a sense of rhythm, the placing of the adverb after the verb and before the week adjunct or object which follows the verb resulting often in disharmony of rhythm and stress. The idiom is a perfectly natural development of the conditions given—a verb to be qualified, a stress qualifier, and an unstressed syllable (to) of no definite meaning. This syllable to is instinctively treated as a or the is treated in a similarly stressed sequence of adjective and noun (‘a brief designation,’ ‘the proper order,’ etc.)
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. the uninflected form of the verb
From Middle English infinitif, of an infinitive, from Old French, from Late Latin īnfīnītīvus, unlimited, indefinite, infinitive, from Latin īnfīnītus, infinite; see infinite.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Late Latin infinitivus, from infinitus (Wiktionary)