split infinitive
Definition - An infinitive that has an adverb between the to and the verbal part.

Example -
In the phrase to boldly go, the infinitive is to go and boldly is the adverb that splits it.

Usage:

1. Feel free to split infinitives any time you feel like it, unless doing so is going to make you sound like an idiot.

Oxford English Dictionary -
The term's first citation is from 1897:
"Are our critics aware that Byron is the father of their split infinitive? ‘To slowly trace’, says the noble poet, ‘the forest's shady scene’."
(Academy 3 Apr. 371/2)

Quotation -
Henry Fowler wrote in 1926, "No other grammatical issue has so divided English speakers since the split infinitive was declared to be a solecism in the nineteenth century: raise the subject of English usage in any conversation today and it is sure to be mentioned."
(Source: Fowler's Modern English Usage s.v. split infinitive )



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