A collection of articles on EFL methodology for teachers at all levels of experience.
An ELT Glossary : Catenative verbs
Catenative verbs are verbs which are followed directly by another verb, in the bare infinitive, to + infinitive or V+ing form. Catenative literally means "chaining". Some examples :
a) Catenative verb followed by bare infinitive
All modal verbs fall into this category :
He can speak three languages.
You should leave before lunchtime
Lexical verbs following this pattern are rare but include help :
They helped clear up the kitchen
b) Catenative verb followed by to + infinitive
We decided to wait.
He expected to win.
We agreed to lower the price.
I want to see you about something
c) Catenative verb followed by V + ing
She loves reading.
Have you finished eating?
I'd suggest waiting for a while.
Some verbs can be used in more than one of these patterns with no change of meaning - eg help and start
They helped clear up the kitchen.
They helped to clear up the kitchen.
It started raining at about two.
It started to rain at about two.
Downing and Locke, English Grammar - A University Course, Routledge