Encyclopedia > Intransitive verb

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Intransitive verb

In grammar, an intransitive verb is a verb that takes no object. Examples of intransitive verbs include:

  • I ate.
  • He thought.
  • She runs.

See also transitive and ditransitive.

There are languages that mark verbs for their transitivity, such that the verb in "I ate" and "I ate a fish" would have different affixes. In addition, ergative verbs generally take complementizers, while normal intransitive verbs can take prepositional phrases. Thus:

  • He thought that you were ill.
  • She runs through the woods.

But not

  • He thought through the woods.
  • She runs that you were ill.

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