The subject is place before the verb and the object after the verb. What is the object in this sentence? A large flock of seagulls was feeding on the other side of the estuary.
Is feeding the object or the other side of the estuary?
Subject: A large flock of seagulls
Verb: was feeding
Prepositional Phrase: on the other side of the estuary.
In that sentence, feed is an intransitive verb, so it doesn't take an object. What looks like its object, the prepositional phrase on the other side of the estuary, isn't. That phrase tells us where the flock was feeding, which makes it adverbial in function. Verbs don't take adverbs or adverbial phrases as their objects, so it can't be part of the verb feed. To test this, move it around, away from the verb:
On the other side of the estuary, a large flock of seagulls was feeding.
A flock -subject of the sentence
Originally Posted by MsNyree
large- adjectival attribute [large = adjective]
of seagulls - noun attribute [introduced by preposition]
was feeding - predicate
on the side - adverbial prepositional phrase.[adverbial constructions or words within a prepositional phrase will never function as objects].
other - adjectival attribute [ other is , here, a pronominal adjective; it modifies the noun side]
of the estuary - noun attribute [ introduced by preposition]; the is the definite article which modifies estuary
Last edited by Teia; 09-Sep-2007 at 20:15.
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