In order to emphasize the infinitive, can I change its position?


1-) Your brother has some opportunities to get a better education in the U.K, but to go to the U.S, he doesn't have any opportunities.

(or- He has some oppurtunities for a better education in the U.K but, for a better education in the U.S, he doesn't have any opportunities.)

2-) For us to enjoy the party very much, there should be at least 100 people there.

3-) Being handsome is important to convince a girl for the relationship, but, to make the relationship last for a long time, it is not really important.

I think that they are not bad. Even if I was taught that infinitives just give purposes, I see lots of examples including infinitives not giving purposes or not modifying nouns.

I don't also think that I can use the combination "for+gerund" instead of "to+infinitive" in those sentences. So what do you think? Thanks in advance.

  • to convince {someone} for {something} is not idiomatic.
    – TimR
    Jun 30, 2018 at 16:33

2 Answers 2


This is an idiomatic sentence:

For us to really enjoy a party it must have live music.

So the following pattern is valid:

For us to enjoy the party very much, there should be at least 100 people there.

although the needs some context to justify it (we can assume the conversation has been about parties in general) and very much is a little stiff but otherwise grammatical.

This is also valid:

For giving thrills, nothing beats a roller-coaster.

For making romantic inroads, candy is dandy.

You can put infinitives at the start of a sentence:

To qualify for this job you must have a valid drivers license.

To be an astronaut at NASA was her goal.

To lose ten pounds you will have to lead a more active lifestyle.

To visit the military installation without prior approval was just not possible.

Here's one that is grammatical but quite wooden:

To take shots on goal there were few opportunities in that game.

What makes it wooden is the fact that the infinitive complements opportunities but has been moved out of the most natural position for a complement.

  • 1
    Note that the examples Tromano gives with the infinitive at the front are all infinitives of purpose. It is semantically unsurprising to find such clauses fronted for emphasis.
    – Colin Fine
    Jul 27, 2021 at 18:34

In examples #2 and #3, the infinitive expresses purpose, and the placement is natural. Example #1 is different; studying in America would be the content of the opportunity but not its purpose. (Opportunities may serve purposes, but do they have purposes?)

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