a guide to finding / a guide to find?

5

I was reading an article and noticed the headline: "A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world."

Why does it use the gerund (finding) instead of infinitive (to find)?

Lily

Posted 2016-01-04T20:51:54.097

Reputation: 51

Answers

4

Great question! So you're asking why the gerund instead of the infinitive.

Well, the "to" in the sentence isn't actually part of "finding":

A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world.

It's actually more connected to "guide." "to" means "about" in this context. You could replace "to" with "about" and the sentence would still have the same meaning (but it would sound less idiomatic). So what we end up with is

A guide about _________.

That blank needs to be filled with a noun - what is the guide about? Is it about rocks? Birds? Lizards?

Since we want our guide to be about "to find peace in a frantic world," we need to turn the verb into a gerund to use it as a noun. So we get

A practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world.

If you wanted to use the infinitive, you'd have to add "how":

A practical guide about/to how to find peace in a frantic world.

This sounds much less smooth to me, especially if we choose to have the "to" there.

Alex K

Posted 2016-01-04T20:51:54.097

Reputation: 4 374