Talk:Ditransitive verb

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Americanism in example?[edit]

The following sentence, would not be used in Australia.

"Let's catch us some fish"

Australians would say, "let's catch some fish", without using "us".

As written, the sentence is an Americanism.

Actually when I read that, I thought "Australian". :-/ Of course, I'm sure there are some American (and probably other) dialects that would use "Lets catch us some fish," but I think most Americans would just say "Lets catch some fish." —Tharenthel 14:37, 15 Sep 2004 (UTC)
It would be OK in my dialect of American, but marked as informal.
Anyway, we need to talk about ditransitive verbs in other languages too, not just English. I've run across some references in the CONLANG mailing list recently; I'll try to come up with something. --Jim Henry
Other languages are needed desperately indeed. And less bulleted lists. :) I'll try to do something about that too. BTW how's CONLANG these days? I haven't checked it in months... Spanish has the same thing very often; it looks just like a benefactive case meeting half-way with middle voice:
Nos comimos la torta. "We ate us the cake."
Me leí todo el libro. "I read me the whole book."
--Pablo D. Flores 01:57, 12 August 2005 (UTC)
CONLANG is not very busy now compared to what it has been at times. I've mostly been lurking. Most of the recent threads have dealt with linguistic theory esp. re: case systems, including monotransitive/ditransitive alignment -- which is, I think, where I recently saw some references to papers about this. That is, how do various languages align one of the arguments of a ditransitive verb with the patient argument of a monotransitive verb. --Jim Henry | Talk 15:21, 12 August 2005 (UTC)

Multiple pronoun examples[edit]

The article has: ...ungrammatical when both objects are pronouns:

*He gave me it. (gave it to me)
*Jean introduced him her. (introduced her to him)

I find the first example totally acceptable, and the second jarring even without pronouns *Jean introduced Peter Susan. Is this just me? --Henrygb 00:22, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

I'm not a native speaker, so on the first example I might be just overreacting. :) I still think two pronouns in a row sound weird. On the second one, you're absolutely right. I get the impression, now, that many verbs have a preferred (or required) pattern. Maybe we should explain that idiomatic use is very common, and leave it at that. --Pablo D. Flores (Talk) 01:32, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

Both are unacceptable in my 'lect (urban Southern U.S.); we need to fix the article to say this usage varies from one dialect of English to another. --Jim Henry | Talk 15:06, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

Pablo: your last revision looks good to me. --Jim Henry | Talk 19:03, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

The next step is internationalization. I'll see what I can contribute, tomorrow. It'd probably be better to move the English usage section to an independent article. --Pablo D. Flores (Talk) 02:46, 2 September 2005 (UTC)

Universality of the notion[edit]

I do not think that the notion of ditransivity is universal, and that is why all the article is about English in fact (and IS Anglocentric). In many (most? nearly all?) languages, the passive transformation, if possible, can promote the direct object into subject but never the indirect object. So using the term "ditransitive" is neither correct or really in use.

For example, Jaśka dała mu książki (Jean-NOM gave him-DAT books-ACC) is the neutral Polish rendering for Jean gave the books to him. The sentence The books were given to him by Jean may be translated as Książki zostały mu dane przez Jaśkę (Books-NOM were him-DAT given by Jean) but a literal translation of He was given the books by Jean would be ungrammatical in Polish. So, I see virtually no reason to treat the Polish verb dać (or any other) as "ditransitive".

Which is more, in the Polish grammatical terminology, a verb is transitive when it can either govern an object in accusative and change it into genitive in the negative form, or it allows the passive transformation (in most cases both conditions are fullfilled). Especially, it means that any word cannot be transitive if we concern the object in dative.

I believe a similar attempt is used towards many other languages, including Latin or Greek.

I suggest to emphasize in the article that ditransivity is limited to a number of languages only, and especialy it is present in English.

--Grzegorj 10:04, 22 January 2006 (UTC)

Are there verbs in Polish which require two object arguments, one accusative and one dative? That is, where leaving out one of those arguments would make the sentence ungrammatical, like:
*I gave him.
If so, I'd say it has ditransitive verbs. Passivization like in English is not a universal trait of ditransitives. --Jim Henry (talk) 22:58, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

Just a quick question[edit]

Is both:

He gave Mary ten dollars. and
He gave ten dollars to Mary.

considered ditranstive use of the verb "give"?

I think they're both ditransitive, since in both cases the verb has three arguments: subject and two kinds of object. --Jim Henry (talk) 22:53, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

And can you say that a word is transitive or intransive on it's own or just when it is used in actual sentence? -85.8.6.252 (talk) 23:41, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

In English a lot of verbs can be intransitive, transitive or ditransitive according to context, without special marking on the verb. Some other languages mark their verbs for valency, i.e. to make a transitive verb intransitive or vice versa you add a prefix or suffix or whatever; I'm not sure how/whether those languages treat ditransitive verbs differently from monotransitive verbs. --Jim Henry (talk) 22:53, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

Ditransitive/monotransitive alignment[edit]

We need examples of dechticaetiative or secondary languages. Esperanto is a split-P language, I think (some ditransitive verbs take their patient as direct object, like "doni", some as a prepositional indirect object, like "provizi" or "regali"), but ideally we want a natural language example of a split-P language too. --Jim Henry (talk) 22:53, 12 September 2008 (UTC)