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The Gerund. § 16. The gerund developed from the verbal noun, which in course of time became verbalized preserving at the same time its nominal character.




§ 16. The gerund developed from the verbal noun, which in course of time became verbalized preserving at the same time its nominal character.

The gerund is formed by adding the suffix -ing to the stem of the verb, and coincides in form with Participle I.

§ 17. The double nature of the gerund.

As a natural result of its origin and development the gerund has nominal and verbal properties. The nominal characteristics of the gerund are as follows:

1.The gerund can perform the function of subject, object and predicative.

They say smoking leads to meditation. (Collins) (SUBJECT)

I like making people happy. (Shaw) (OBJECT)

The duty of all progressive mankind is fighting for peace. (PREDICATIVE)

2.The gerund can be preceded by a preposition.

I am very, very tired of rowing. (Hemingway)

3.Like a noun the gerund can be modified by a noun in the pos­sessive case or by a possessive pronoun.

"I wonder at Jolyon's allowing this engagement,"he said to Aunt Ann. (Galsworthy) — «Меня удивляет, что Джо/ион допустил эту помолвку», — сказал он тетушке Энн. Is there any objection to my seeing her? (Galsworthy) — Кто- нибудь возражает против того, чтобы я повидался с ней?

The verbal characteristics of the gerund are the same as those of the participle:

1.The gerund of transitive verbs can take a direct object.

I had now made a good progress in understanding and speak­ing their language. (Swift)

2.The gerund can be modified by an adverb.

She burst out crying bitterly. (Hardy)

3.The gerund has tense distinctions; the gerund of transitive verbs has also voice distinctions. The forms of the gerund in Modern English are as follows:

  Active Passive
Indefinite writing being wrtten
Perfect having written having been written

 

There is no gerund in the Russian language and the English gerund is rendered in Russian in different ways:

(a)by a noun.

Dancing had not begun yet... (Mansfield) — Танцы еще не начались.

(b)by an infinitive.

She had tea with Cipriano before leaving. (Lawrence) - Перед тем как уйти, она выпила чаю с Чиприано. It is no good hiding our heads under our wings. (Galsworthy) - Бесполезно прятать голову под крыло.

(c)by деепричастие.

And without waiting for her answer he turned aid left us. (Du Maurier) — И, не дожидаясь ее ответа, он повернулся и вышел.

On seeing Bella he stopped, beckoned her to him, and drew her arm through his. (Dickens) — Увидев Беллу, он остановился подозвал ее к себе и взял под руку.

(d) by a subordinate clause.

Не regretted now having come. (Galsworthy) — Теперь он со­жалел, что пришел.



It should be observed that though the active forms of the gerund may be rendered in different ways, the passive forms are nearly always rendered by a clause.

As she contemplated the wide windows and imposing signs, she became conscious of being gazed upon. (Dreiser) — Когда она рассматривала широкие витрины и внушительные вывески, она почувствовала, что на нее смотрят. After having been informed of the conference in my lady's room... he immediately decided on waiting to hear the news from Frizinghall. (Collins) — После того, как ему сообщили о со­вещании в комнате миледи..., он сразу решил подождать, чтобы узнать новости из Фризингхолла.

 


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