An infinitive is to plus a verb form. It can be used as an adverb. Examples: to be, to see, to be seen, to be eaten.
Adverb infinitives are used to modify verbs. They usually tell why.
An infinitive phrase is made up of an infinitive and any complements (direct objects, predicate nominatives, predicate adjectives, or modifiers.) An infinitive phrase that comes at the beginning of the sentence is always followed by a comma and modifies the subject of the sentence.
Instructions: Find the infinitive phrases in these sentences and tell what word they modify.
1. She came to explain the answer.
2. The kids went to see the circus.
3. On the rough road I drove carefully to prevent any damage.
4. I returned a different way to avoid further damage.
5. We stopped at a cafe to eat lunch.
–For answers scroll down.
1. to explain the answer modifies the verb came
2. to see the circus modifies the verb went
3. to prevent any damage modifies the verb drove
4. to avoid further damage modifies the verb returned
5. to eat lunch modifies the verb stopped
For your convenience, all of our lessons are available on our website in our lesson archive at http://www.dailygrammar.com/archive.html. Our lessons are also available to purchase in an eBook and a Workbook format.
from Daily Grammar Lessons Blog