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Direct and Indirect Objects

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Direct and Indirect Objects

Direct and Indirect Objects

Direct Objects

A direct object is a complement that tells who or what receives the action of a verb or shows the result of the action.

REMINDER
Direct and Indirect Objects Reminder


A complement is a word or word group that completes the meaning of a verb.

A direct object may be a noun, a pronoun, or a word group that functions as a noun

To identify a direct object, ask Whom? or What? after a transitive verb.

NOUN 
  • The accountant usually hires an assistant during tax season. [Whom does the accountant hire? The accountant hires an assistant.] 
PRONOUN 
  • Did the dog bury it? [The dog did bury what? It buried it.] 
WORD GROUP 
  • I will take whatever is available. [I will take what? I will take whatever is available.]

A direct object may be compound

EXAMPLE 

  • We drove Mary and Sam to school. [Mary and Sam tell who receives the action of the verb drove.]

Objective Complements

An objective complement is a complement that helps complete the meaning of a transitive verb by identifying or modifying the direct object.

A sentence can have an objective complement only if the sentence has a direct object. 

An objective complement may be a noun, a pronoun, an adjective, or a word group that functions as a noun or an adjective.

EXAMPLES 
  • Many people consider Tiger Woods a positive role model for youth. [The compound noun role model identifies the direct object Tiger Woods.] 
  • We painted the shutters green. [The adjective green describes the direct object shutters.]

NOTE

Direct and Indirect Objects


Only a few verbs take objective complements. These verbs include consider, make, and any verbs that can be replaced by consider or make

Verbs that can be replaced by consider or make include appoint, believe, call, choose, color, cut, dye, elect, find, keep, name, paint, render, and sweep.

An objective complement may be compound

EXAMPLE 
  • Competition in business often makes products more affordable and available. [Affordable and available form a compound objective complement describing the direct object products.]

Indirect Objects

An indirect object is a complement that often appears in sentences containing direct objects and that tells to whom or to what or for whom or for what the action of a transitive verb is done.

A sentence must have a direct object in order to have an indirect object. 

Indirect objects usually come between the verb and the direct object. 

An indirect object may be a noun, a pronoun, or a word group that functions as a noun.

EXAMPLES 
  • Our grandparents brought us some peaches from Georgia. [The direct object peaches receives the action of the verb brought and tells what was brought. The indirect object us tells to whom the peaches were brought. The indirect object us comes between the verb brought and the direct object peaches.] 
  • Our math teacher allows whoever has been absent two days for make-up work. [The direct object days receives the action of the verb allows and tells what is allowed. The indirect object whoever has been absent tells for whom the teacher allows two days. The indirect object whoever has been absent comes between the verb allows and the direct object days.]

NOTE

Direct and Indirect Objects Note


Be careful not to confuse an indirect object with an object of the preposition to or for. 

INDIRECT OBJECT 
  • The officer read the suspects their rights. [The indirect object suspects tells to whom the officer read the rights.] 
OBJECT OF A PREPOSITION 
  • The officer read the rights to the suspects. [Suspects is the object of the preposition to.]
An indirect object may be compound.

EXAMPLE 
  • I always bring my brother and sister souvenirs from camp. [Brother and sister tell to whom I bring souvenirs.]

Direct and Indirect Objects Quiz

Decide whether the underlined word or words is a direct object, indirect object, or objective complement

author-img
Mr. ‏El-Sayed Ramadan ‎ ‎

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