I can't specifically figure out the meaning of ordinary preposition, especially with "to".

When does verb + ing come after to?

And when to + bare infinitive?

  • 3
    To serves two functions in English. It is a preposition, and it also serves as a particle which marks an infinitive. Your English dictionary will tell you what ordinary means. The word has no special meaning in grammar. When you see a phrase like to eat, that is the infinitive of the verb eat. The word marks the infinitive: it identifies the infinitive and is part of it. Every other use of the word to is as a preposition. In to the lighthouse, let's go to the beach, I am addicted to watching TV, etc., the word to is a plain, ordinary preposition. Jun 23 '17 at 7:16

Generally speaking, to can be either a preposition or an infinitive marker. Now if you want to learn how they are used in sentences you should learn the words more deeply. In fact, you should learn whether or not a verb or adjective is followed by a certain preposition or not.

Some verbs can be followed by to where to is a preposition:

  • She admitted to being strict with her children.
  • He confessed to stealing the jewelry.

to may be a part of a verb-group in two-word or three-word verbs:

  • The remark about an election inevitably gave rise to widespread speculation.

On the other hand, you have verbs or adjectives that can be followed by to+infinitive. Here to acts as infinitive marker.

  • He refused to accept our offer.

Extra Info:

Please note that there are certain sentences in which to acts as an adverb; I don't know much of them, but one is as below.

  • push the door to.

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