Thursday August 19, 2010

Mind Our English

by Fadzilah Amin

I’m confused. Could you please tell me which sentence is correct and why?

1. I’m looking forward to meeting you.

2. I’m looking forward to meet you.

As far as I know, after the word “to”, we have to use the basic form (sing, play).

But sometimes I find some articles using -ing after the verb to.

For example: Three plead guilty to causing detainee’s death.

When do I use the verb with -ing and without it. – Shahida Rahamad

Sentence 1) “I’m looking forward to meeting you.” is the correct one.

The word “to” actually belongs to two different word classes or parts of speech. When used in “to sing”, “to play”, etc., it is an infinitive markerand is used with the base form of the verb (without the -ing) in sentences like “I like to sing/play.” But “to” can also function as apreposition before nouns, pronouns noun phrases and gerunds, which are -ing forms of verbs functioning as nouns.

In “I’m looking forward to meeting you.”, “meeting” is a gerund. The “to” before it is a preposition, not an infinitive marker. So it can be used before a gerund