+1
(1) "Did you try calling him? -- Yes, I did. But he wasn't answering."

(2) "Did you try to call him? -- Yes, I did. But he wasn't answering."

(2) should be right, in my opinion. However, what is right and why the wrong sentence is wrong? Emotion: big smile

Thanks in advance.
1 2 3
Comments  
They're both correct. The first question is actually quite idiomatic. However, I don't see any reason for the past continuous.

Yes, I did. But he didn't answer.
So if my teacher said he would accept just that sentence with "try to call", though not entirely sure about the second sentence, can I hold the view that the second one with "try calling" is also acceptable? What he also said was that if I bring any justification for that, he would accept it as a positive point for us in a test we took today.

I think the acknowledgement of an American native speaker should suffice, shouldn't it? Emotion: wink

Thanks.
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
Both 1 & 2are correct. Maybe 1 is preferable. Also correct would be "But he didn't answer."
It could perhaps be argued that you can say, "Did you try to call him? -- Yes, I did. But he didn't answer," but you cannot say, "Did you try to calling him? -- Yes, I did. But he didn't answer."

The reason is that if you tried calling him, you did actually call him (to see if something could be solved by the call). You could say, "Did you try calling him? -- Yes, I did. But he wasn't very helpful."
Marold(1) "Did you try calling him? ...
The "try -ing" form is used when the speaker wants to add the idea of offering a helpful suggestion.
(There is also the slight suggestion that several tries may be necessary.)
The "try to" form is used when the speaker is talking about an actual attempt, pure and simple.
(There is also the slight suggestion that only one try is meant.)

Did you try calling him? ~ I think that calling him would have been a good idea. Did you do that?
Did you try to call him? ~ Did you make an attempt to call him?
___________

He wasn't answering implies "over a period of time", therefore probably consisting of several tries.
He didn't answer typically implies one try.

The differences are subtle. Others may have different views on the subject.

CJ
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
fivejedjonbut you cannot say, ") "Did you try to calling him? -- Yes, I did. But he didn't answer."
I'm lost. Emotion: smile

Even supposing that's a typo, I'm lost.

-- Did you try calling him?
-- Yes, but he didn't answer.

Sounds normal to me.

CJ
CalifJimThe differences are subtle. Others may have different views on the subject.
I think that you and I are saying very similar things in a slightly different way.

In the sentence we are discussing, the difference is quite subtle, and the fact that the speaker is responding to a question does not help. The speaker may be responding to the question s/he thought she heard. Had there been no previous question, I (and I can speak only for myself) would have said, depending on what had happened:

I tried to call him, but he didn't answer.
or:
I tried calling him, but he wasn't very helpful.

(Sorry - I am repeating myself. However, we can compare this woth what follows.)

In the situation below, the difference is clearer:

The room was hot. I tried to open the winow,, but it was stuck.
The room was hot, I tried opening the window, but it made no difference.
fivejedjon-
The room was hot. I tried to open the window, but it was stuck.

The room was hot. I tried opening the window, but it made no difference.
Ah. So you're saying that "try to" may imply failure, but "try -ing" always implies success?

I'm not sure I always use "try -ing" that way, but maybe I should! Emotion: smile

CJ
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
Show more