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Verbs, Transitive Verbs, and Intransitive Verbs

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Transitive Verbs


Verbs are the words in a sentence that describe the action of a sentence or that introduce the condition or state of someone or something in the sentence.

Action: Anna throws the ball.

Introduction of a condition: Trent is very sick.

Transitive verbs

There are many action verbs. Those that can have a direct object are often called transitive verbs. Here is a list of some commonly used transitive verbs. Note that they can be used with a direct object.

Transitive Verbs Used in a Sentence
Buy He buys a newspaper.
Carry I am carrying a child.
Find Can you find the book?
Help She helps us.
Like I don’t like cabbage.
Lose Don’t lose your money.
Read She is reading a book.
Pull The dentist pulled the tooth.
Push The boy pushes the cart.
Sell I am selling my car.
Speak Father speaks Spanish.
Write We are writing some postcards.
Understand Do you understand me?


Intransitive verbs

Intransitive verbs are not followed by a direct object. They often show a movement to a place and are sometimes followed by a prepositional phrase. Following is a list of some commonly used intransitive verbs:

Intransitive Verbs Used in a Sentence
Come Can you come to the party?
Crawl The baby crawls on the floor.
Drive We are driving fast.
Fly I flew here from Paris.
Go Are you going home?
Hurry We hurry to the window.
Jump Peter jumps from the roof.
Ride I am riding in his car.
Run The girls run past the school.
Sail We are sailing to Europe.
Travel Do you want to travel with us?
Walk I walk out of the theater.

Linking verbs.

Still, other verbs introduce the condition or state of someone or something. They do not take a direct object and are most often followed by an adjective. These verbs are usually called linking verbs. Here are some commonly used linking verbs:

Linking Verbs Used in a Sentence
Appear The boy appears quite well.
Taste The popcorn tastes salty.
Becomes The weather becomes bad.
Feel It feels hot.
Grow The dog is growing weak.
Look She looks unhappy.
Seem The coat seems too small for you.
Smell The pizza smells good.
Sound The music sounds awful.

Careful! Some of the linking verbs have a second usage. They can be used as transitive verbs. Look at these examples:

Linking Verb: His skin feels hot. (hot  adjective)

Transitive Verb: He feels a sharp pain. (a sharp pain  direct object)

Linking Verb: The sky grows cloudy. (adjective)

Transitive Verb: We grow vegetables. (direct object)

Linking Verb: That smells beautiful. (adjective)

Transitive Verb: She smells the flowers. (direct object)

Linking Verb: My coffee tastes bitter. (adjective)

Transitive Verb: Risa tasted the ice cream. (direct object)

You can identify linking verb by substituting am, is, or are for the verb. If the sentence makes sense with the substitution, it is a linking verb. If it does not make sense, it is a transitive verb. Some examples:

It feels cold. (It is cold.) This makes sense.   Linking Verb

He feels her pulse. (He is her pulse.) This makes no sense.   Transitive Verb

They smell nice. (They are nice.) This makes sense.   Linking Verb

We smell coffee. (We are coffee.) This makes no sense.   Transitive Verb


This post contains the content of book English Grammar for ESL Learners  below is the link of complete book practice_makes_perfect__english_grammar_for_esl_learners 

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