auction

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  • cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    Greetings Majlo,

    As the accounting professors say in answer to most questions,
    "It all depends."

    How close is the relationship between the speaker and listener? Is the dialogue personal, among close friends, or between business colleagues?

    Which is most natural and appropriate will often vary with context.
     

    foxfirebrand

    Senior Member
    Southern AE greatly modified by a 1st-generation Scottish-American mother, and growing up abroad.
    I'd say "are you going to the auction" is appropriate if going to this auction is a fairly commonplace event in the routine, or something that's done "on Thursdays," say. Your listener knows which auction you mean, you're both raising livestock and commonly see each other at the auction.

    "Are you going to go to the auction" presupposes a specific auction both of you know about, but it might be a one-shot deal-- "Antiques Roadshow" is in town, it's an upcoming event, anybody might go-- are you going to?

    This difference is hinted at-- if the expressions were used interchangeably it wouldn't sound a sour note in the ear of a native speaker.

    Example of which:

    Are you gonna go
    to Scarborough Fair...

    .
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    majlo said:
    Hey,
    Would you say Are you going to go to the auction tomorrow? ?
    I think Are you going to the auction tomorrow? is more natural and appropriate. Am I right?
    Thanks :)
    Thanks Majlo....

    In that case...

    For more formal speech, among acquaintences or colleagues with little in the way of a personal relationship, I would use the first question. The second should be acceptable in a formal context, but is better suited to conversation among friends.

    More casual may not always be "more natural". What is most appropriate will depend on the speakers, their relationship or lack of same, and the circumstances in which the dialogue occurs.

    Software that tries to present one or another of these sentences as "better" is suspect. If it does that, it would be dismissing register as a variable in language.
     

    nycphotography

    Senior Member
    American English
    I think the two are completely interchangeable, as the "going + infinitive" is a generic future contsruction which sounds redundant with "to go". So in that one specific case, we shorten it to "are you going to the auction tomorrow".

    With every other infinitive, we keep the full "going + infinitive"

    Are you going to sell the tractor at the auction tomorrow?
    etc.
     

    foxfirebrand

    Senior Member
    Southern AE greatly modified by a 1st-generation Scottish-American mother, and growing up abroad.
    nycphotography said:
    With every other infinitive, we keep the full "going + infinitive"
    Are you going to sell the tractor at the auction tomorrow?
    etc.
    Yes, that's the equivalent of "are you going to go to the auction."

    But you could also say "are you selling the tractor at the auction tomorrow." That's the grammatical equivalent of "are you going to the auction."
    .
     

    timpeac

    Senior Member
    English (England)
    The difference FFB introduces is very subtle, and before reading it I would have said they were interchangeable. I agree with his nuance. That notwithstanding I do find the concatenation of the two "go"s enough to avoid the "going to go" version in any circumstance. This is just a personal preference though.
     
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