1. Nothing'sEverBuilt ToLast

    Nothing'sEverBuilt ToLast Junior Member

    Málaga (Spain)
    Spanish (Spain)
    Hi everybody!!

    I've got some questions about the use of 'ask for'
    I want to say 'él pidió a la niña que no molestara a Mr Craven'

    Is this sentence correct?
    He asked the girl for don’t bothering Mr Craven.

    It doesn't sound good to me to say doesn't, but ... I'm really confused. Can you give an explanation of the use of ask for and a negative order ? :confused:

    Many thanks, ¡muchas gracias!
     
  2. nwon Senior Member

    Northwestern Ontario
    Inglés canadiense
    "He asked the girl to not bother Mr. Craven"

    You can ask for someone to do something or for an item, but you don't say the actual frase 'ask for' in situations like this.


    EJ. He asked for a sandwich.

    He asked his mother to make him a sandwich.

    As for negation, when using the infinitive form, all you need is to add 'not' after the preposition 'to'. I'm unsure if it's strictly incorrect or not, but it often comes before the 'to' as well.
     
  3. Peterdg

    Peterdg Senior Member

    Belgium
    Dutch - Belgium
    Purists will say you should not split the infinitive "to bother", so it would be

    He asked the girl not to bother Mr. Craven;
     
  4. FromPA

    FromPA Senior Member

    Philadelphia area
    USA English
    It sounds better to me to add the "not" before the "to" -- she asked him not to bother...
     
  5. Nothing'sEverBuilt ToLast

    Nothing'sEverBuilt ToLast Junior Member

    Málaga (Spain)
    Spanish (Spain)
    I think I've already understood it :p

    So is it better to say 'He asked the girl not to bother Mr. Craven' ?
    Can I split the infinitive or is that gramatically incorrect?
    And does this happen always when you have ask for and a negative sentence (to use not to)? :confused:
     
  6. nwon Senior Member

    Northwestern Ontario
    Inglés canadiense
    Ah, thanks for the correction. I guess it's just one of those finer points of grammar that is usually never contemplated by native speakers, as i use and hear both all the time.
     
  7. Peterdg

    Peterdg Senior Member

    Belgium
    Dutch - Belgium
    Don't worry. It's one of those rules that do not really reflect linguistic reality anymore. You are right: you hear/see both constructions. It's only when you have to do an exam and you happen to have a traditional corrector that you may get in trouble:rolleyes:.
     
  8. FromPA

    FromPA Senior Member

    Philadelphia area
    USA English

    Not a correction, just a preference. I split infinitives all the time, mostly with adverbs. There are just times when it sounds more natural.
     
  9. Nothing'sEverBuilt ToLast

    Nothing'sEverBuilt ToLast Junior Member

    Málaga (Spain)
    Spanish (Spain)
    [COLOR=#0][/COLOR][COLOR=#0]You've already settled all my doubts. Thanks![/COLOR] :)
     
  10. donbeto

    donbeto Senior Member

    Vancouver (Canada)
    Eng (Canada)
    Yes, all the above answers are good. Splitting infinitives is no longer taboo (if it ever was). I think the BBC still adheres to this rule however.

    Notice that we don't say

    He asked the girl that she not bother Mr. Craven

    like you would in Spanish, but that would be easily understood and in this case to me at least, sound fine.
     
  11. nwon Senior Member

    Northwestern Ontario
    Inglés canadiense
    I actually do say it that way sometimes. I notice now how often I use the subjunctive in English ever since I learned Spanish.
     

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