Delphine Donkey's question

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numnum1111
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'Are English split infinitives a form of irregular verbs or past pronouns?'

Delphine Donkey asked Daddy Pig this question in an episode of Peppa Pig, and I'm wondering what the answer is.
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Anna Schoon
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(Original post by numnum1111)
'Are English split infinitives a form of irregular verbs or past pronouns?'

Delphine Donkey asked Daddy Pig this question in an episode of Peppa Pig, and I'm wondering what the answer is.
Neither!

The Oxford Dictionary defines a split infinitive like this: "a construction consisting of an infinitive with an adverb or other word inserted between to and the verb, e.g. she seems to really like it."

So it has nothing to do with irregular verbs or past pronouns, but is entirely a problem of word order, or syntax.

Now I have a question for you: what on earth is a "past pronoun"? Surely a pronoun is not a verb, and can therefore not have a past??? I think Dephine Donkey was being particularly asinine on this occasion... :laugh:
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(Original post by numnum1111)
'Are English split infinitives a form of irregular verbs or past pronouns?'

Delphine Donkey asked Daddy Pig this question in an episode of Peppa Pig, and I'm wondering what the answer is.
As Anna Schoon says, they're neither. Inserting words between the 'to' and the verb doesn't have anything to do with irregularity: it just makes the construction more convoluted and less clear in 99% of cases.

Of course, the other 1% includes 'to boldly go' which, were it to be corrected, just doesn't work. That's more familiarity than anything else.
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