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Grammar: Complementary Infinitive

Very often infinitives are used to complete ("complement") the meaning of another verb. In these situations, the subject of the infinitive is often the same as the subject of the main verb. Why is that important? If the subject of the main verb is in the nominative case, and if the infinitive contains a participle, then that participle agrees in gender, number and case (nominative) with the subject of the main verb.

  • videtur. she seems to be sleeping. videtur dormire.
  • dicitur. he is said to have pursued the soldier. dicitur militem persecutus esse.
  • perhibetur. the woman is said to have been captured. mulier perhibetur capta esse.
  • fertur. Marcus is said to have a lot of money. Marcus fertur multam pecuniam habere.

Modern Languages 4970 / MRS 4903: Medieval Latin. Spring 2003 Online Course at the University of Oklahoma. Visit for more info.
Laura Gibbs, University of Oklahoma - Information Technology © 2003. Last updated: December 29, 2002 7:12 PM