Gerund?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Pythagoras, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. Pythagoras

    Pythagoras Active Member

    As there are lots of people on here who seem to be good with grammar can somebody explain what on earth gerunds and gerundives are?
     
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  3. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    Doesn't Steve Gerund play for Liverpool, and isn't a Gerundive what happens when he's tackled in the penalty box :?: :!: ;-)

    Seriously, a gerund is a noun derived from a verb, such as "swimming", in the sense of "I like swimming", or "swimming is fun".

    (having done a bit of browsing, I think I'd better leave "gerundive" to the experts!)
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2007
  4. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    I am sure you will have done this, but for those wondering:
     

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  5. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    I remember this stuff only vaguely from my Latin classes in secondary school (gerundium and gerundivum it's called there), so I looked it up on Wikipedia (although the article there is "disputed")

    A gerund is like Peter described above (a verb used as a noun).
    A gerundive does not exist in English apparently? If it did, it would be used in a sentence like "The cat is to be fed", in which case the gerundive of "to feed" would replace "to be fed". A gerundive is also called a "future passive participle"
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2007
  6. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    I'm curious about this. Would the English version not be 'The cat is going to be fed'? That would make more sense than 'is to be fed', which implies to my twisted and evil mind 'to be fed to... (the dog, the rats, the wife...etc)'

    Ah the twists and turns of language...
     
  7. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    As I understand it, the gerundive implies an imperative or an instruction, so it may be better to say 'The cat has to be fed' or ' . . . must be fed' rather than ' . . . is going to be fed', which is more like a matter of fact statement.
     
  8. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    I'd agree with Mike here... stating the 'cat is to be fed' implies that it is the cat itself that is to be fed to something!!

    This in similar manner to "Do you mind my smoking" is incorrect and should be... "Do you mind my smoking". The former implies that it is the person themselves who is smoking i.e on fire... "me smoking" is the person actually causing the smoke whereas "my smoking" defines an act.
     
  9. dyl

    dyl Active Member

    And the difference is? ;)
     
  10. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    Well... if in a pub - here you'd throw a bucket of water over the one, and get the other one arrested :tup
     
  11. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    I was just quoting the example from Wikipedia. There may be better examples...

    Another one mentioned on the side is the Latin phrase "Quod erat demonstrandum" (often abbreviated to "Q.E.D."). In this sentence demonstrandum is a gerundive, and the literal translation is "which was to be demonstrated"
     
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  13. brassica

    brassica New Member

    I think this is right - a gerundive is something which is requiring to be done so QED=that which is requiring to be demonstrated, but I can't think of any other examples?

    Now, shall we move on to the subjunctive?...
     

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