Tuesday, January 18, 2011

What are objective complements?

An objective complement is similar to a subjective complement. While a subjective complement describes or renames the subject, the objective complement describes or renames the direct object.

The meaning of a sentence with an objective complement retains the same meaning even if the words "to be" are inserted between the direct object and the objective complement, or are used in place of the word "as."

Finally, the difference between an objective complement and a plain, old, adjective is that an objective complement must complete the thought. In other words, without an objective complement, the meaning of the sentence would be lost.

John judged the wine too dry.
Subject = John
Verb = judged
Direct object = wine
Objective complement (adjective) = dry
Determiner (article) = the
Adverb = too

John judged the wine a disaster.

Subject = John
Verb = judged
Direct object = wine
Objective complement (noun) = disaster
Determiner (article) = the
Determiner (article) = a

John regarded the wine as a work of art.
Subject = John
Verb = regarded
Direct object = wine
Objective complement (noun) = work
Determiner (article) = a
Determiner (article) = the
Prepositional phrase (adjective) = of art
Object of preposition = art
Expletive = as (can be replaced with "to be")

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