Cats take time out to contemplate the world around them and to just be.

tesoke

Senior Member
USA
Persian
Hi, I cannot understand the meaning of the red part of the following sentences, from "How to Relax Like a Cat". Would you please explain it to me. Thanks a lot.

Cats take time out to contemplate the world around them and to just be. Time to be a copycat.
 
  • Winstanley808

    Banned
    English - U.S.
    Sometimes you have to split an infinitive but not here: "and just to be" would be better, and perhaps easier to understand. "To be" = "to exist." "just" = "merely, only, nothing else." So "just to be" = do nothing except exist; relax, don't expend a lot of physical or psychic energy.
     

    tesoke

    Senior Member
    USA
    Persian
    Thank you. I got your explanation about the sentence but you spoke of "splitting an infinitive". What is this "splitting an infinitive"? Thanks.
     

    Winstanley808

    Banned
    English - U.S.
    It's an entirely different topic but "splitting an infinitive" is inserting an adverb or adverbial phrase between the particle "to" and the verb itself. The infinitive form of the verb here is to be. Inserting the adverb "just" gives us to just be. The full infinitive has been "split" = divided into two pieces. There are probably threads about this, debating whether you may split an infinitive whenever you please, only when it is necessary, or never.
     
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