Saturday, August 19, 2006

Do vs Make

1. Do - for indefinite activities e.g with words like thing, something, nothing, anything, what. e.g

a). Do something!
b). What shall we do?
c). Then Ram did a very strang thing.

2. Do - when we talk about work and jobs. e.g

a). I'm not going to do any work today.
b). It's time to do the accounts.
c). I would't like to do your job.

3. We use do...... ing structure to talk about activities that take a certain time, or are repeated. Usually there is a determiner (e.g the, my, some ) before the -ing form. Verb after do cannot have object in this structure.But do can be used with a compound noun that includes verb + object. e.g

a). During the holidays I'm going to do some walking and a lot of reading.
b). I'm going to watch some TV.
c). I want to do some bird-watching this weekend.

4. Make - we use make to talk about constructing, building, creating etc.e.g

a). My father and I once made a boat.
b). Let's make a plan.

5. Common fixed expressions

do good, harm, business, one's best, a favour, sport, exercise, one's hair, one's teeth, one's duty.

make a journey, an offer, arrangements, a suggestion, a decision, an attempt, an effort, an excuse, an exception, a mistake, a noise, a phone call, money, a profit, a fortune, peace, love, war, bed, a fire, progress.

6. After make + object, we use the infinitive without to. e.g

I made her cry. (not - I made her to cry. or I made her crying)

The infinitive must follow the object. e.g

I can't make the television work. ( not - I can't make work the television)

In passive constructions the infinitive with to is used. e.g

Ram was made to repeat the whole story.

7. In some cases make can be followed by myself, yourself etc and a past participle. This structure is common with understood and heard. e.g

She had to shout to make herself heard.

8. We can talk about an effect or change with make + object + adjective/noun . e.g

The rain made the grass wet. ( not - The rain made wet the grass).

We do not use make ... be in this structure.

You have made me a happy man. ( not - You have made me be a happy man).