More on Indirect objects with to and for

 

This chart shows a few examples of some verbs which can use “to,” and some verbs which take an indirect object without “to.”

The last column shows how “for” is used to express “for the benefit of”; note that all these verbs can take “for” when this idea is meant. Additionally, as in (d), “for” is the only way to indicate the recipient or intended beneficiary of the direct object.

The gray areas indicate that the verb does not appear in this pattern. For example, in (b), these verbs DO NOT appear in Pattern 1: Buy a present to her.


EXAMPLES OF TYPE OF VERB

1
WITH TO INDIRECT OBJECT

2
AS INDIRECT OBJECT BEFORE THE DIRECT OBJECT
3
WITH FOR
(for the benefit of.)
(a)

bring, give, lend, pass, pay, read, send, show, take, teach, write
I brought
some candy to the children.
I brought
the children
some candy.
We brought
some groceries
home for
our neighbor;
she’s sick and
can’t go
shopping herself.
(b)

buy, build, find, fix (food or drink) get, make
  They bought
their daughter
a tricycle.
They bought a
tricycle for
their daughter.
(c)

announce, charge, explain, introduce, repeat
Please
explain
this to me.
  Please announce this (to the students) for me – I can’t talk today because of my laryngitis.
(d)

answer, cash, fix (repair), prescribe, pronounce, translate
    Can you answer the question for me?

RSK

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