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Direct and Indirect Objects

A direct object is the receiver of action within a sentence, as in "He hit the ball." Be careful to distinguish between a direct object and an object complement:

  • They named their daughter Natasha.

In that sentence, "daughter" is the direct object and "Natasha" is the object complement, which renames or describes the direct object.


The indirect object identifies to or for whom or what the action of the verb is performed. The direct object and indirect object are different people or places or things. The direct objects in the sentences below are in boldface; the indirect objects are in italics.

  • The instructor gave his students A's.
  • Grandfather left Rosalita and Raoul all his money.
  • Jo-Bob sold me her boat.

Incidentally, the word me (and similar object-form pronouns such as him, us, them) is not always an indirect object; it will also serve, sometimes, as a direct object.

  • Bless me/her/us!
  • Call me/him/them if you have questions.

In English, nouns and their accompanying modifiers (articles and adjectives) do not change form when they are used as objects or indirect objects, as they do in many other languages. "The radio is on the desk" and "I borrowed the radio" contain exactly the same word form used for quite different functions. This is not true of pronouns, however, which use different forms for different functions. (He [subject] loves his grandmother. His grandmother loves him [object].) (See, also, pronoun cases.)

Category: Problem Points | Added by: Teacher_Koce (2015-01-13)
Views: 512 | Tags: grammar for bulgarians, Direct, Indirect Objects
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