I wanted to know how do we use verbs after but

I do nothing but missing you
I do nothing but miss you

Which one is correct?

I think it is the first one, but I actually don't know it's just a guess

i read somewhere that after "but" we use bare to infinite but then I saw somwhere else that the "ing" form can be used too.

  • We like to see what you have already thought about this. Here are three questions that you should answer 1) What do you think is correct? 2) Why do you think that? 3) Why do you doubt it?
    – James K
    Apr 19, 2020 at 11:37

1 Answer 1


The correct is "I do nothing but miss you."

The phrase "nothing but" is acting as an adverb. If this adverb is removed we get

I do miss you

This is correct. After "do" we use a bare infinitive.

The phrase "nothing but" is idiomatic and means "only". This whole expression means the same as

I do only miss you.

In the idiomatic expression, the structure is fixed. You to have "do nothing but". So ?"I nothing but miss her" is rather unusual and unidiomatic. This idiom requires "do support".


My first thought was that this was a parallel structure: "I do nothing, but I do miss you. But that is incorrect. For example, "He does nothing but miss her" is correct English, and if this was a parallel structure, it would be "... but misses her"


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