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Transitive Verbs

James wrote the letter.

In this sentence, the act of writing is done by James.

The word letter shows what James wrote; it is therefore the object of the word wrote. The word letter must be expressed to show what James wrote; it is required to complete the meaning of the verb wrote. Wrote is, therefore, a transitive verb.

A transitive verb is a verb that requires an object to complete its meaning.

All transitive verbs are verbs of incomplete predication.


The word transitive is derived from the Latin verb transire, which means to pass over.

In this case the action of writing is passed over from James to the letter and ends there.

1. Boys play ball.

2. The carpenter builds houses.

3. The blacksmith shoes horses.

4. The baker makes bread.

5. Children love flowers.

Name the transitive verbs in the above sentences, and give the object of each. Write five other sentences containing transitive verbs.

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