Learn English – the main usage of the “to” as a prepositional condition


when I was young I wasn't from the English area but I am used to learning English grammar already.
Well , I am still thinking about one thing maybe because I had not even got to learn this grammar until I have realized that is such use in English . Nobody has even said to me that an -ing form can be added after the "to" in actually . What I used to learn was all about the infinitives (base verbs) only .
I have seen and gone through the post in this webpage but I still cannot understand about it. So what can I actually do so that I can always be able to identify the differences about those situations hence I must able to make it clear about whether to put a gerund or a base verb after that particular "to" ? =(

Best Answer

Only if you can put [to + noun] after a certain verb would you usually use [to + verb-ing] when using a gerund. The reason is that a gerund functions like a noun, so it can regularly be replaced with a noun. An asterisk indicates a sentence that is not grammatical.

*She likes to eggs.
*She likes to eating.

She consented to an evacuation.
She consented to evacuating the area.

Note that the first group of verbs is far more common than the last, so [to + verb-ing] is uncommon.

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