A direct object receives the action performed by the subject. The verb used with a direct object is always an action verb. Another way of saying it is that the subject does the verb to the direct object. Example: The car hit the tree. To find the direct object, say the subject and verb followed by whom or what. The car hit whom or what? Tree answers the question so tree is the direct object.
If nothing answers the question whom or what, you know that there is no direct object. Example: The car sped past. The car sped whom or what? Nothing answers the question so the sentence has no direct object.
The direct object must be a noun or pronoun. A direct object will never be in a prepositional phrase. The direct object will not equal the subject as the predicate nominative, nor does it have a linking verb as a predicate nominative sentences does.
Direct objects may be compound. Example: The car hit the tree and the fence. The car hit whom or what? Tree and fence answer the question so tree and fence are the direct objects.
Instructions: Find the subjects, verbs, direct objects, and predicate nominatives in these sentences. They may be sentences with direct objects, compound verbs with separate direct objects, predicate nominatives, or without either a direct object or predicate nominative.
1. Jeanne was the chairperson of the dance committee.
2. The boys at the park played tag and ran races.
3. The baker cut and wrapped the bread.
4. The large round spaceship rose over the quiet city.
5. Jeff and Carl speak the same language.
--For answers scroll down.
1. Jeanne = subject / was = verb / chairperson = predicate nominative
2. boys = subject / played = verb / tag = direct object // ran = verb / races = direct object
3. baker = subject / cut, wrapped = verbs / bread = direct object
4. spaceship = subject / rose = verb / (There is no predicate nominative or direct object.)
5. Jeff, Carl = subjects / speak = verb / language = direct object