We have so far studied the conjugation of verbs in three tenses – Present, Future and Past Tense. The conjugated forms of the verbs are variable forms, which take up various terminations depending upon the person (first, second or third person) and number (singular or plural) of the subject. Apart from such conjugated forms, the verbs can also attain certain forms which are indeclinable. i.e. these forms remain the same irrespective of tense, person and number of subject etc.
The two important indeclinable categories derived from the verbs are :
1. Gerunds, and
In this Unit we will learn about the Infinitives in detail.
The Infinitive in English = to + base verb
E.g. to go, to see, to listen etc.
Please consider the following examples :
1. The boy wishes to go a park.
2. The merchant went to the town to see his friend.
3. The lay devotees will assemble in the monastery to listen to Dhamma.
Now we will study how such infinitives are formed in Pali and their usage in sentences. We will also translate a few sentences from the Suttas which contain infinitives in them.