Common mistakes in the use of gerunds

A gerund is an –ing form that acts like a noun. Therefore, gerunds are sometimes called verbal nouns.

In this lesson we will take a look at some of the most common errors in the use of gerunds.

If you want to use a verb form after a preposition, use a gerund, not an infinitive.

Incorrect: I am thinking to write a novel.

Correct: I am thinking of writing a novel.

Incorrect: We were prevented from enter the room.

Correct: We were prevented from entering the room.

A noun or a pronoun used before a gerund should be in the possessive case.

Incorrect: They insisted on me resigning the post.

Correct: They insisted on my resigning the post.

Incorrect: They objected to John playing for the other team.

Correct: They objected to John’s playing for the other team.

Note that the possessive case should not be used with a gerund when the gerund is in the passive or when the noun or pronoun denotes a lifeless thing.

Incorrect: We were shocked at President Kennedy’s being assassinated.

Correct: We were shocked at President Kennedy being assassinated.

Incorrect: There is no danger of the roof’s crashing.

Correct: There is no danger of the roof crashing.

Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I'm Manjusha. This is my blog where I give IELTS preparation tips.

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