Edited by Pam Peters, Peter Collins and Adam Smith
[Varieties of English Around the World G39] 2009
► pp. 261–274
The present contribution investigates three patterns of non-finite clausal complementation which are known to be variable in contemporary British and American English, namely the use of bare and to-infinitives with help, the presence or absence of from before gerunds following the verb prevent, and the choice between infinitives and gerunds as complements of begin and start. On the whole, Australian and New Zealand English usage displays a broadly “British” profile of variation, and differences between the two antipodean varieties are minor. While not spectacular in themselves, these findings fit quite well into long-term developments that have been shaping the complement-clause system of English in the Late Modern period. Australian and New Zealand English are taking part in these world-wide drifts at a pace comparable to British English. In particular, no rapid recent “Americanization” of usage can be observed.
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