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  1. #1
    BrunaBC's Avatar
    BrunaBC is offline Member
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    Object pronoun + verb

    Hi,

    I'm puzzled by the following sentences:

    I like to see them play.
    I love to hear him laugh.

    Them / him are the objects (what I like to see, and what I love to hear), but can I put the verb after these object pronouns?

    What if I say:

    I like to see they play.
    I love to hear he laugh.

    I don't know why, but the second option doesn't sound good.

    I'd appreciate if someone could help me.
    Not a teacher.

  2. #2
    MikeNewYork's Avatar
    MikeNewYork is offline VIP Member
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    Re: Object pronoun + verb

    Quote Originally Posted by BrunaBC View Post
    Hi,

    I'm puzzled by the following sentences:

    I like to see them play.
    I love to hear him laugh.

    Them / him are the objects (what I like to see, and what I love to hear), but can I put the verb after these object pronouns?

    What if I say:

    I like to see they play.
    I love to hear he laugh.

    I don't know why, but the second option doesn't sound good.

    I'd appreciate if someone could help me.
    In your first two sentences, "Play" and "laugh" are not verbs, they are bare infinitives (without an introductory "to"). The direct objects of the verbs "like" and "love" are infinitive phrases ("to see them play" and ""to hear him laugh").

    Your second two sentences are incorrect. You are trying to make the pronouns the subjects of infinitives. That doesn't work. You could say "I like to see them playing" and "I love to hear him laughing". "Playing" and "Laughing" are gerunds that can replace infinitives. But the pronouns cannot be the subjects of gerunds either.

  3. #3
    BrunaBC's Avatar
    BrunaBC is offline Member
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    Re: Object pronoun + verb

    Thanks again Mike.
    That's what I figured, but I couldn't express why they were wrong.
    And your explanation was very clear and accurate!
    Not a teacher.

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