Are these grammatically acceptable?

1 He encouraged my working hard. (always)

2 He encouraged me to work hard. (always or one-off occurrence)

Is this wrong?

3 He encouraged my applying for the visa. (wrong - because it's only a one-off occasion)

  • 2
    "Encourage" takes both infinitival and gerund-participial complements. Both genitive and non-genitive forms are permitted in the latter, with the genitive as usual being more formal.
    – BillJ
    Oct 6, 2021 at 7:38
  • Do you see the difference which comes down to the following: encourage someone to do smth - means a one-off action, encourage someone's doing something - means on a regular basis.
    – user1425
    Oct 6, 2021 at 7:49
  • 2
    No, and there is nothing wrong with your example 3.
    – BillJ
    Oct 6, 2021 at 7:51


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