The Art of Splitting

Don’t we all just split infinitives without giving it a thought?

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To unconscionably cut a relationship is NOT an artful way of ending it. To subtly break someone’s heart requires some skill, style — and a bit of courage- especially when the reason behind it is a new-found flame. The same is true for splitting infinitives.

I believe it’s perfectly all right to consciously split an infinitive (a verb preceded by “to”) if it adds strength and clarity to the sentence. Bold writers habitually insert adverbs between “to” and a “verb” no matter how many times dogmatic grammarians criticize such phrases as “to never kiss” and “to awfully forget” (the way moralists crucify philanders or polyanders [note: I just made up this word]).

Even the best partners have to get by living separate lives, so do the preposition “to” and the “verb”. Their bond is not restrictive but flexible to split ups. I bet you won’t find fault with  “to eventually succeed”, “to completely fail”, “to hesitantly smile”, and “to quickly remember”. So shall we stop worrying about infinitive breakups?

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