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Which of these is the correct one, or are both correct?

  1. I moved slowly, to not wake my parents. - Intended meaning
  2. I moved slowly, not to wake
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1 Answer 1

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Actually both are usable but the mostly used fluent way of doing it will be "not to < verb >"

I moved slowly, not to wake my parents.

Because what you are not trying to do is waking your parents.

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  • I don't see why what you are not trying to do is waking your parents is any more "explanatory" than what you are trying to do is not wake your parents. Sep 20, 2019 at 11:57
  • @FumbleFingers I can easily relate the amount of usage! Also I did not imply it is explanatory I did imply it is mostly used and more fluent. Sep 20, 2019 at 12:01
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    The "fluent" versions of that text are I moved slowly, so as [not to / to not] wake my parents. Usually so as not to, but there's nothing wrong with the sequence so as to not there - it's just much less common. Sep 20, 2019 at 15:58
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    At least part of my downvote is because what you are not trying to do is waking your parents is seriously non-idiomatic. Native speakers would almost always use the infinitive form is [to] wake your parents (where including to is effectively a stylistic choice). Sep 20, 2019 at 16:03
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    Let us continue this discussion in chat. Sep 20, 2019 at 16:19

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