"Hezekiah is anxious to help.
Hezekiah is difficult to help.
To someone who knows English, these sentences are radically different In the first one, Hezekiah is planning to do the helping, and in the other, he is the one liable to be helped. Yet, the 'slot' pattern of both is identical:
NP V ADJ INF
Hezekiah is anxious to help
Hezekiah is difficult to help
A similar problem occurs with the sentence:
Hezekiah is ready to eat.
Any English speaker could (with a bit of thought) interpret this sentence in two ways: Hezekiah was hungry, and wanted to have his dinner. Or, Hezekiah had perhaps fallen into the hands of cannibals, and had been trussed up and seasoned ready for consumption."
Jean Aitchison: Linguistics
Hodder & Stoughton Educational, Sevenoaks - 1978
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