The infinitive is a grammar term that refers to a basic verb form that often acts as a noun and is often preceded by the word "to."
"To sing" is an example of an infinitive.
Gram. of or connected with an infinitive: an infinitive phrase
Origin of infinitiveLate Latin infinitivus from Classical Latin infinitivus (modus), literally , unlimited (mood) from infinitus (see infinite): so named because it is not limited to any person, number, or tense
Gram. the form of a verb that expresses existence or action without reference to person, number, or tense and that can function grammatically as a noun, adjective, or adverb: in English, it is usually the form of the first person singular present preceded by the marker to (Ex.: to go, to think) or by another verb form (Ex.: can he speak? make him try)
nounAbbr. inf. or infin.
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.
Origin of infinitiveFrom Middle English infinitif of an infinitive from Old French from Late Latin īnfīnītīvus unlimited, indefinite, infinitive from Latin īnfīnītus infinite ; see infinite .
- (grammar) The uninflected form of a verb. In English, this is usually formed with the verb stem preceded by 'to'. e.g. 'to sit'
- (grammar) A verbal noun formed from the infinitive of a verb.
- (grammar) Formed with the infinitive.
- Unlimited; not bounded or restricted; undefined.