Object in English Grammar
The object is a word or word which receives the action and mostly occurs at the end of a sentence or after the verb. More simply an object in English Grammar is a group of words or a word (noun and pronoun) that are affected by a verb or preposition. An object (English grammar) can be one word like a noun or pronoun, or it can be a group of words. For instance:
- I write a letter.
- I know him
- Did you see the old car?
- Did you beat the poor dog?
In the first and second sentence ‘a letter’ & ‘him’ is the direct object of the verb. Which is single means 1 word. They are nouns and pronouns. But in the third and fourth sentences, ‘the old car’ & ‘the poor dog’ are a group of words that are affected by the verb and an object.
A sentence is consist of many elements which build the structure of the sentence. So do not mix up the complement and object. In more detail about complement, an object is receiving action and complement is a word or words which complete the sentence. So rest of the elements are subject, main verb, auxiliary verb, and complements.
There are three kinds of objects.
- Direct object.
- Indirect object.
- The object of prepositions.
1) Direct objects:
The direct object is affected by the main verb. It gives the answer to ‘what’
Ex. I write a letter. She cuts the tree. They brought the fan. We drink water.
In the above sentences, you can find many elements in the sentences. How to find the object? First of all, find out the main verb of the sentence, then ask the question (what) from the verb. Like in the first sentence ‘I write a letter the main verb is written, we need to ask the question from the main verb ‘what’. I write, what? The answer is a letter. So the object is a ‘letter’. Moreover, all transitive verbs are needy of the object.
2) Indirect Object:
The indirect object (humans and animals) is mostly the receiver of the direct object. If a sentence contains two objects then one is direct and the next one is indirect. The indirect object is needy of a direct object because it is the receiver of the direct object. Like
- I write a letter to him.
- I write him a letter.
In the above sentences, two objects exist in each of them. Like in the first sentence: ‘I write a letter for him’ letter is the direct object, because it appears after the main verb and is the receiver of the main verb (write) “him” is the receiver of the letter’s so-called indirect object.
What about the second sentence, where ‘him’ appears after the main verb write?
So we have to follow the first rule.
- First, find out the direct object.
- Then indirect object will be the receiver of the direct object.
‘I write him a letter.’
Find out the main verb which is written, then ask the question ‘what’ the answer is the direct object. Which is a letter. Now for whom ‘him’ is the receiver and indirect object of the sentence?
- They found him beating John.
- I bought him a pen
- I lend them some money.
- We lend some money to them.
- She wrote a letter to him
- We gave him homework.
- They offered us the chance.
- He promised a party to us.
- The teacher taught them a new lesson today.
- Khan gave us a treat.
3) Object of prepositions.
Whenever a noun and pronoun appear after prepositions is called the object of prepositions. The noun and pronoun after the proposition is governed by that preceding proposition.
She went to school with him. ‘Him’ is an object which appears after the preposition with and it is governed by ‘with’ so it is an object of a preposition.
- John sits under the table.
- The cat was seen over the wall.
- Khan came from Iran.
- The money was given to poppers.
- The book was printed by him.