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Adjective + Infinitive

We can often use infinitives after adjectives to tell why the subject feels a certain way.

Subject + be verb + adjective + infinitive
  • I am happy to help you.
  • She was afraid to ask for help.
  • He was angry to hear about getting fired.
  • I am reluctant to quit my job.
  • I am sorry to bother you.
  • It will be easy to do.
  • It is going to be hard to finish on time.
  • She has been determined to succeed.
  • It is likely to rain tomorrow.
Here is a complete list of most common adjectives that are followed by an infinitive. This is not a complete list, but these are the ones that you need to know. Make sentences for these just like the examples above.

afraidalarmedamazed
angryanxiousashamed
certaincontentcurious
delighteddepresseddetermined
disappointeddistresseddisturbed
eagereasyembarrassed
encouragedexcitedfortunate
gladhappyhesitant
likelyluckypleased
preparedproudready
relievedreluctantsad
shockedsorrysurprised
touchedupsetwilling

There is also another very common sentence structure that has an infinitive after an adjective. This sentence shows why it is not a good idea to do something or why something is impossible to do.

Subject + be verb + too + adjective + infinitive
  • This mountain is too high to climb.
  • It is too cold to go swimming.
  • It is too hot to exercise outside.
  • This book is too hard to read.
  • Many economists consider banks to be too big to fail.
We can add "for + person" to be more specific about who or what group of people that we are talking about.
  • This mountain is too dangerous for children to climb, but it is okay for adults.
  • This shirt is too expensive for me to buy.
  • That English book is too hard for me to study.
We don't need the infinitive if both the speaker and listener already know what it is.
  • This book is too hard for me (to read).
  • This food is too spicy for her (to eat).
Infinitives are a key part of the English language. If you want to learn English or speak English well, then you must have a firm understanding of infinitives and when you use them. Make sure to study the other lessons about English infinitives and gerunds. Knowing them well will help you speak English fluently and naturally.

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