Verbs with two objects

There are many verbs that can take two objects: an indirect and a direct object. These objects can be either nouns or pronouns. The order of the objects in the sentence can vary.

When both objects are nouns:

verb + indirect object + direct object

  • Give John the book

verb + direct object + to + indirect object

  • Give the book to John

There is no difference between the above two examples, although the first is perhaps more common. Don’t forget the preposition ‘to’ in the second example.

When the indirect object is pronoun, both of the above structures are possible:

  • She gave me the message / She have the message to me.

When the direct object is a pronoun, we can only use:

verb + direct object + to + indirect object

  • he didn’t show them (the marks) to his parents.

When both objects are pronouns we must also use this structure:

  • Show it to me.
  • Bring Gina and me some coffee = Bring it to us.

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