Reply to "Having to punish"

symphony posted:

I mean the verb used after have to should be in the base form.

For eg: have to + verb (base form)

             have to + work

Yes, Symphony. The verb following "have to" (in whatever form "have" appears in "have to") is always in its base form. The "to" in periphrastic "have to" is the stem of the infinitive that follows.

In other words, the "to" in "have to" is the same "to" that we find in "to punish," "to swim," "to run," "to operate," "to dance," "to think," "to Google," and so on, for every single (non-auxiliary) verb in the English language.

Historically, the periphrastic modal "have to" developed out the related construction "have NP to VP." That is, from sentences like "I have a horse to sell" the English language gradually acquired sentences like "I have to sell a horse."

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