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Transitive vs. Intransitive Verbs

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Presentation on theme: "Transitive vs. Intransitive Verbs"— Presentation transcript:

1 Transitive vs. Intransitive Verbs

2 Transitive verbs direct action toward someone or something else in the sentence.  That person or thing that receives the action is called a direct object. The camera took beautiful pictures. Sabine saw me. Carmine baked cookies for our class. To find the direct object, ask yourself "whom" or "what" after the verb.  (Took what?  Pictures.  Saw whom?  Me.  Baked what?  Cookies.)

3 Intransitive verbs do not have direct objects.
The hurricane blew over the mainland. She smiled happily. Blew what?  No answer, right?  There's no direct object. Smiled what?  Smiled who?  No answer!  Again, no direct object.

4 Try it. Is the verb transitive or not?
Robert polished his shoes. polished - what? - his shoes I called my sister yesterday. called - whom?  - my sister Carla waited for the bus. waited what?  waited whom?  no answer.  Intransitive I wrote that letter. wrote - what? - that letter She scribbled sloppily.

5 Caution! You can answer who / or what after to be or to become, but these verbs are not action verbs.  They are linking verbs.  Linking verbs are never transitive.  

6 Is the verb transitive or not? What's the direct object?
1. The birdcage swung from a golden chain. 2. Margaret angrily crumpled her letter in her fist. 3. Someone answered that question. 4. He shuddered with fright during the scary part of the movie. 5. We witnessed the beautiful sunrise. 6. Acorns drop from the trees every fall. 7. Charlie combed his hair nervously before the dance. 8. We bought paper napkins for the picnic. 9. Zelda smiled at the thought of a parade in the snow. 10. Fish and potatoes sizzled in the pan.

7 In English, cases signal how certain noun phrases function in a sentence.  In English, word order helps alot.  Generally the subject is first in a sentence. Why does this matter in German? In German different forms of the article (der, die, das, ein, eine…) can signal different functions of a noun phrase. The different functions are called cases. Subjects are said to be in NOMINATIVE case, while most direct objects are in ACCUSATIVE case.

8 Compare: Der Hund ist braun. Ich mag den Hund.
Die Katze ist klein. Der Hund isst die Katze. Das Pferd beißt mich. Ich beiße das Pferd. Which sentences contain direct objects / are in accusative case? What do you notice about them?

9 Why is this important? Compare: Den Hund sieht das Mädchen.
Der Hund sieht das Mädchen.   How are the sentences different? In which sentence is the dog the subject (nominative) and in which is the dog the direct object (accusative)?

10 Remember, in English, subjects are usually first
Remember, in English, subjects are usually first.  This isn't always the case in German.

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