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Why the below one is correct?

I look forward to meeting you.

And why this one is wrong?

I look forward to meet you.

I generally do these mistakes in letter writing.

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  • It's similar to "look over at someone"; you "look forward to something". That's why you need a gerund, i.e. the -ing form, not an infinitive (basic form of the verb). May 1, 2015 at 11:11
  • See also: look forward to meet you, or to meeting you? May 1, 2015 at 11:15
  • You say "I'm happy to meet you", you would never say "I look forward to meet you."
    – Catija
    May 2, 2015 at 22:47
  • @Catija For the same reason you'd say "I look forward to the movie" but not "I'm happy to the movie" :-)
    – user230
    May 3, 2015 at 2:09
  • See also: To + verb + '-ing' usage question May 8, 2015 at 5:22

1 Answer 1

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That's because the string look forward to is generally followed by 'verb-ing'.

I look forward to meeting you
I look forward to reading this book
I look forward to making your acquaintance
I look forward to speaking with him.

Check out the examples on COCA. Most of them follow this format. This is because in such structure, 'to' serves as a preposition and not the infinitive marker [Thanks Snailboat].

This is how it is -I just learned it that way! :)

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    Right, because this to is the preposition, not the infinitive marker. Look forward to can also be followed by a regular noun phrase; search COCA for looking forward to the for some examples.
    – user230
    May 1, 2015 at 7:21
  • Hey, nice seeing you after long time @snailboat tip included! :)
    – Maulik V
    May 1, 2015 at 7:29

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