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You split a banana with ice cream, fudge sauce, and whipped cream. You split an infinitive by inserting a modifier--an adverb, usually--between the to and the verb, as in "I want you to carefully read over these instructions." The notion that this incision is grammatically unsound was first set forth in the mid-1800s, and it finds its basis in Latin, a language in which the infinitive is a one-word verb form.
Split infinitives have often been the source of much debate among teachers, grammarians, and those who wish to use the most proper of speech. It has been said that an infinitive should never be split.
Infinitives are used in many of the corporate communications we review. But what is the best way to use them? Let's take at look this week.
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