What Is an Object? (with Examples)

An object is a noun (or pronoun) that is governed by a verb or a preposition. There are 3 kinds of objects: a direct object, an indirect object, and an object of a preposition.

Examples of a Direct Object

The direct object of a verb is the thing being acted upon (i.e., the receiver of the action). You can find the direct object by finding the verb and asking "what?" or "whom?". For example: Read more about direct objects.

Examples of an Indirect Object

The indirect object is the recipient of the direct object. You can find the indirect object by finding the direct object (see above) and then asking who or what received it. In the examples below, the indirect objects are shaded, and the direct objects are in bold. In the last example, the direct objects were noun clauses. An object can be a single word, a pronoun, a noun phrase, or a noun clause.

Read more about indirect objects.

Examples of an Object of a Preposition

The noun or pronoun after a preposition is known as the object of a preposition. In the examples below, the objects of prepositions are shaded, and prepositions are in bold. Read more about objects of prepositions.

Objects Are in the Objective Case

Objects are always in the objective case. In English, this only affects pronouns (but not all pronouns). For example: Here is a list of subjective pronouns and objective pronouns:
Subjective PronounObjective PronounComment
youyouNo change
ititNo change
whowhom More on who & whom

A Quick Test


The word who is never an object. Objects are put into the objective case, and the objective case of who is whom. For example: You can think of it like this:

Whom is to who as:

me is to I
him is to he
her is to she
us is to we
and them is to they

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See Also

Advice or advise? List of easily confused words