English grammar

Module 4, Sentence Parts, Lesson 7:

Challenges with Direct Objects

English grammar

Challenge 1: Compound Direct Objects

A verb may have two direct objects.

Bob hit the trash can and the mail box on his way out of the driveway.

Challenge 2: Direct Objects in Questions

In a question, the direct object may be the interrogative pronoun what, which, or whom. It cannot be where, how, or when. They are adverbs. Sometimes it helps to keep all the words in the sentence and turn it into a declarative sentence.

What did you buy? (You did buy what.)
Whom did you see at the mall? (You did see whom at the mall.)
Which is mine? (Mine is which.)

The interrogative pronoun, however, could be acting as an adjective modifying the direct object.

What color do you like best? (You do like what color best.)
Whose books do you read? (You do read whose books.)
Which figurine did you buy in Japan? (You did buy which figurine in Japan.)

The direct object may also be a noun in the sentence, but the noun may not be where you expect it to be.

Where will you spend your summer? (You will spend your summer where.)
How many books have you read? (You have read how many books.)

Practice What You've Learned

English grammar
Use the toolbar above to mark up the sentence. Underline the subject once, the verb twice, and circle the direct object.
At the nursery, we bought roses, daffodils, and peonies.
What will you be bringing to the party?
I really hate snakes and spiders.
What kind of pizza should we order?
Where did you find that sweater?
Whom will Janae visit in England?
I usually read mysteries or non-fiction.
Which will I get?
You should brush your teeth and hair before leaving.
Which backpack did you drop?