I've finished eating my breakfast

I've finished to eat my breakfast

how difference?🤔

@mayuutann I would not say "I've finished to eat my breakfast"; that sounds like incorrect. "I've finished eating my breakfast" sounds correct. But it's strange because "I've started to eat my breakfast" sounds correct. I don't know why they're different. Maybe "started to" is special.

@mattskala @mayuutann I think: if you are actually doing sth or have been doing sth you use "eating". If it's still an intention: "to eat"

@mcscx @mayuutann But why isn't "I've finished to eat" acceptable? With "started," I think "started to eat" and "started eating" have nearly identical meanings; I don't know a case where I would specifically want to say one and not the other.

To make it even more complicated, with "wanted" I think "wanted to eat" is okay and "wanted eating" is incorrect. So maybe it just depends which verb you use. "Finished" needs "-ing," "wanted" needs "to," "started" can take either.

@mattskala @mayuutann maybe verbs like plan, start, want are about intention or being at the beginning.

@mcscx @mayuutann Yes, maybe an abstract/concrete distinction. But this still doesn't fully explain the difference between "start" and "want."

@mattskala @mcscx maybe "finished eating" means "食べていることが終わった", and "finished to eat" means "食べることが終わった". So "finished to eat" means "これからの人生、もう食べない".

and "start to eat" means "食べることを始める". Because I haven't eaten yet, so using "ing" may be funny...🤔

@mayuutann @mcscx I don't think I know Japanese well enough to clearly understand the difference between "食べるいること" and "食べること". Are they both natural things to say?

Usually I think -ing verb forms in English are a lot like 〜て in Japanese ("eating" --> 食べて whereas "to eat" --> 食べる) but I'm not sure that helps with this question.

@mattskala @mcscx oh, I'm sorry. I have to go to work very soon. So I'll send you the reply later.

@mattskala @mcscx Yes, that's correct.

"食べていること" and "食べること" are both natural to say.😀

@mayuutann @mattskala I've found this article talking about #gerund & #infinitive and the difference in meaning: http://qttr.at/23aa

@mcscx @mayuutann I think it's right on what it says, but it doesn't answer all of my questions

@mattskala @mayuutann maybe "I've started eating a long time ago" (will be finished soon) but "I've just started to eat" (still a lot to eat
@mattskala I haven't tried diagramming a sentence in decades but I think it's the tense that makes it look/ sound awkward
>But why isn't "I've finished to eat" acceptable?
to me looks like you've finished (something in the past) to eat (presumably now or in the near future) @mcscx @mayuutann

@fl0wn @mcscx @mayuutann okay, but then why is "I started to eat" okay? That is also mixing the infinitive with a past-tense verb.

@mattskala "I started to eat" also looks awkward while "I've (adding the contraction to have, which is a transitive verb) started to eat" makes it look okay (at least to me but like I said it's been a long time since I've been in a class room). I've started eating would probably be the safest bet. @mcscx @mayuutann

@fl0wn @mcscx @mayuutann Hmm. I don't think I agree - "I started to eat" sounds perfectly okay to me; adding "have" is also acceptable but subtly changes the meaning in the same way that adding "have" usually does. But the possibility exists that this may also differ somewhat between dialects.

@mattskala It's possible but it's the tense that made my mind hang up. Also, for the grammar nazis I should have said have was used as an auxiliary verb

from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/have
>have...auxiliary verb
1 —used with the past participle to form the present perfect, past perfect, or future perfect
has gone home
had already eaten
will have finished dinner by then

2 : to be compelled, obliged, or required —used with an infinitive with to or to alone
we had to go
do what you have to
it has to be said

@mcscx @mayuutann

@fl0wn @mcscx @mayuutann Yeah, but I think we mostly agree on "have" - the question I think is most interesting is between "started" and "eat" rather than between "have" and "started." Part of the problem seems to be that "started" here is *kinda sorta* like an auxilliary verb too, but not quite really.

And I still think a big part of the answer, maybe not all of it, is that "start" is special in that it can take an infinitive where some other verbs that operate on verbs (like "finish") can't.

@mattskala I do find it to be something interesting to think about. English is such a screwy language, American English even more so @mcscx @mayuutann

@fl0wn @mcscx @mayuutann I think the issue would still exist in other tenses:

"I will start to eat", "I will start eating" - both sound okay to me
"I will finish to eat" - NOPE, "I will finish eating" - okay

"I am starting to eat" - okay
"I am starting eating" - sounds awkward because of the ing/ing repetition but I'm not sure I'd say it's incorrect grammar
"I am finishing to eat" - NO
"I am finishing eating" - I might say this but prefer to rephrase entirely because of the ing/ing.

@mattskala in this case I think it comes back to context. So, for the two examples you show as awkward, if I were to preface it with something like "I'm tired of working today. I will finish to eat." or  "Only one job left before lunch, I am finishing to eat." it would work somewhat (perhaps not the best examples but I am finishing beering :p) @mcscx @mayuutann
@fl0wn "I am finishing to eat" may sound ok but maybe because it's just short for: "I am finishing _work_ to eat" @mattskala @mayuutann

@mcscx @fl0wn @mayuutann yes - your comment came in while I was typing mine, but in this example "to eat" is not the object of "finish" even though the sequence of words "finish to eat" appears in the sentence.

@fl0wn @mcscx @mayuutann If you say "Only one job left before lunch, I am finishing to eat" I think it means "I am finishing my job for the purposes of being allowed to eat"; totally different parse, where "to eat" is not the object of "finish."

I think (for Mayu) it may simply come down to different verbs take different types of arguments. Like 〜を食べる, 〜まで行く, 〜と思う and not 〜まで食べる just because 食べる goes with を and not まで.

@fl0wn @mcscx @mayuutann ...and so in English (IMHO), "start" can take an infinitive or a participle but "finish" cannot take an infinitive, only a participle (or noun, etc.)

@mayuutann @fl0wn @mcscx Okay, well, I think (maybe others don't agree) that you can say "start to eat" or "start eating" in any tense. But you can't say "finish to eat" - it has to be "finish eating."

@mayuutann @fl0wn @mcscx Just like you told me I can't say "食べなくて下さい," it has to be "食べないで下さい."

@mattskala to further correct myself, I guess it also depends on context. If you were to say, for example-"I sat down. I started to eat. "etc. That sounds okay to me as well @mcscx @mayuutann
@fl0wn @mcscx @mattskala @mayuutann It does look a bit awkward. I don't know people that talk like this... it seems more informal. "I'm about to eat a bowl of rice." is an acceptable future-tense sentence. "I'm eating a bowl of rice." is present-tense and "I ate a bowl of rice." is past-tense.
@fl0wn @mcscx @mattskala @mayuutann I think you are correct. It is a tense issue. Also... my brain was screaming inside as I read that sentence. ;-; (Sometimes it gets a bit anal about things!)

I have to admit that I jump about with tense too.  It's a tricky one to get right and stick to when forming sentences. As authors and readers know well I think!
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