Indirect Object

What Is an Indirect Object? (with Examples)

The indirect object of a sentence is the recipient of the direct object. Every sentence must contain a verb. Most verbs have a direct object (the thing being acted upon). For example: Some sentences tell us about the recipient. That's the indirect object. For example:

Examples of Indirect Objects

Here are some examples of indirect objects (shaded):

How to Find the Indirect Object

Before you can find the indirect object, you have to find the direct object. You can find the direct object by finding the verb and asking what?. Once you've found the direct object, ask who or what received it? For example: Remember, once you have found the direct object, you have to ask who (or what) received it to find the indirect object.

Only Transitive Verbs Have Direct Objects and Indirect Objects

A verb that takes a direct object is called a transitive verb. A few verbs do not have a direct object. They are known as intransitive verbs. For example:

Do Not Confuse Complements with Direct Objects

If you ask what? with a linking verb, you will find a verb complement not a direct object. For example:

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See Also

What is a direct object? What are transitive verbs? What are intransitive verbs? What are objects? What is an object complement? What is the object of a preposition? What is the accusative case? What is the dative case? Glossary of grammatical terms