Want | English Vocabulary
After want, we normally use an infinitive with to.
- I don’t want to talk to her again.
An object + infinitive structure is also possible.
- She wants me to clear her doubts.
That-clauses are not normally used after want.
Want can be followed by an object + complement.
- I want him back.
- They wanted him dead.
- We want the job finished by Monday.
To be or as is used before a noun complement.
- I want you to be my wife. (OR I want you as my wife. )
(NOT I want you my wife.)
Be wanting means be missing or lacking.
- A few pages of this book are wanting.
- He is wanting in courtesy. (= He is not polite.)
Want meaning ‘need’
In informal British English, want is often used to mean ‘need’.
- Your hair wants a good brush.
- That car wants a clean.
In this case, want can be followed by an –ing form.
- That car wants cleaning.
- You hair wants brushing.