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  1. #1
    Babai is offline Junior Member
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    Thumbs down Object or objective complement?

    1.I know him to be honest. 2.i want him to go. 3.i saw him go. here ''to be honest'', ''to go'', ''go'' are objective complements?

    Thank you

  2. #2
    TheParser is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Quote Originally Posted by Babai View Post
    1.I know him to be honest. 2.i want him to go. 3.i saw him go. here ''to be honest'', ''to go'', ''go'' are objective complements?

    Thank you

    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) I understand that there are two theories:

    First theory


    I = subject.

    know = verb.

    him = direct object.

    to be honest. = objective complement (describes "him").

    Second theory

    I = subject

    know = verb

    him to be honest = infinitive phrase as object of "know." ("Him" is the subject of the

    infinitive "to be." In other words: I know that he is honest.)

    (2) Personally, I prefer the second theory.

  3. #3
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Both of the theories TheParser mentions have their merits. When it comes down to actually producing acceptable utterances, my line is, "If it's acceptable, does it matter what we call it?"

  4. #4
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    Both of the theories TheParser mentions have their merits. When it comes down to actually producing acceptable utterances, my line is, "If it's acceptable, does it matter what we call it?"
    Perhaps not for native-language speakers, but I believe it does matter for speakers of other than English languages.

  5. #5
    Barb_D's Avatar
    Barb_D is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    I don't want to start an argument, but why would it matter to them either? Aside from passing a useless grammar test, will knowing what to call it help them write better sentences? Will their grammar be more correct, knowing that it's a complement? I don't think so. Knowing the labels for things doesn't help in communicating.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  6. #6
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    I don't want to start an argument, but why would it matter to them either? Aside from passing a useless grammar test, will knowing what to call it help them write better sentences? Will their grammar be more correct, knowing that it's a complement? I don't think so. Knowing the labels for things doesn't help in communicating.
    Well, as an English teacher, it has been my experience that it helps serious students to be able to categorize certain elements of English grammar, and I would add that (1) as a student of the Spanish language, it has and does help me with the language and (2) I don't find that grammar tests are "useless".

  7. #7
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    I've told my own children to use the line from Peggy Sue Got Married, if they want, on grammar tests. She turns in a blank algebra test and says (she's gone back in time so she knows this) more or less "None of this will ever be relevant to me in my life again."

    I write for a living. I could not make my mortgage if I didn't know how to craft good sentences. I find my ability to label a verb as ditransitive or identify complements utterly irrelevant to my working life.

    If it's fun for people, like a puzzle, great. But for anyone to think they can't learn to speak and write excellent English without knowing the labels for things is a fallacy.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  8. #8
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    But for anyone to think they can't learn to speak and write excellent English without knowing the labels for things is a fallacy.
    That is SO true.

  9. #9
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    I've told my own children to use the line from Peggy Sue Got Married, if they want, on grammar tests. She turns in a blank algebra test and says (she's gone back in time so she knows this) more or less "None of this will ever be relevant to me in my life again."

    I write for a living. I could not make my mortgage if I didn't know how to craft good sentences. I find my ability to label a verb as ditransitive or identify complements utterly irrelevant to my working life.

    If it's fun for people, like a puzzle, great. But for anyone to think they can't learn to speak and write excellent English without knowing the labels for things is a fallacy.
    As stated in Webster's, "Opinion implies a conclusion thought out, but open to dispute".

  10. #10
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: Object or objective complement?

    Quote Originally Posted by billmcd View Post
    As stated in Webster's, "Opinion implies a conclusion thought out, but open to dispute".
    Indeed, and nobody can 'prove' Barb's opinion (which is also mine) wrong/right. I can say only that some of my students do appear to find labels useful. They are have usually been through educational systems in which labelling is trained, drilled and tested. Most of my students have managed very happily without detailed labelling.

    I believe (and I have no hard evidence to support my belief ) That 99% of people who acquired other languages throughout human history, until a century or so ago, did so without the benefit of labels, rules or ... teaching.

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