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Subject-Verb-Indirect Object-Direct Object

Meaning in an English sentence is conveyed not only by the words but also by the arrangement, or pattern, of the words.

There are five basic sentence patterns in English.

The simplest pattern is a subject followed by an intransitive verb

A verb that is complete by itself and does not need to have a direct object.
, as in the following examples:

One pattern consists of a subject followed by a verb, an indirect object

A noun or pronoun that usually precedes the direct object and identifies to what or whom or for what or whom the direct object is intended.
, and a direct object
A noun or pronoun that receives the action of a transitive verb.
, as in the following examples:

She gave the children gifts.
        subject = she
        verb = gave
        indirect object = the children
        direct object = gifts
The flight attendants offered the hungry passengers a light meal.
The friendly tour guide handed each member of the group a detailed map.

A sentence in this pattern says that the subject acted on one thing and had a result on another. In the first example above, the woman performs an action on the gifts by giving them, and the result is passed on to the children.

This pattern is most effective in showing part of a chain of causes and effects. It allows you to show what is affected by an action, as in the following sentences:

The new plant brought the city jobs.
The extended summer hours allowed more visitors access to the museum.
The woman from Madrid passed her traveling companion her ticket.


Quick Check  

Which of the following sentences is in the subject-verb-indirect object-direct object pattern?

Quaint island shops offer handmade items at discount prices.
Constant trade winds give the island trees a permanent windblown appearance.

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