My English teacher taught me that "I saw him crossed the street" was correct. But I'm not sure that the sentence is correct because I have never seen it like that in any writing. I've ever read sentences like "I saw him cross the street" and "I saw him crossing the street" In case that is correct, please teach me what it means.

And he also said "I saw him to cross the street" was wrong. However, the dictionary says the sentence is correct only in the written language and the passive voice.

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    Note that, if spoken, "I saw him across the street" could easily be misheard as "I saw him crossed the street". – Hot Licks Apr 28 '18 at 12:38
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    Now this should be in ELL – MaxB Apr 28 '18 at 16:00
  • 'I saw him to cross the street,' is wrong. When the dictionary says 'passive,' it means "He was seen to cross the street." And the dictionary is right to say this is formal and written English. – Hugh Apr 29 '18 at 3:25
  • There is no question of written language or passive voice there. “I saw him crossed the street” and “I saw him to cross the street” will always be wrong and without justification. Who doubts that much, please explain. "I saw him across the street" has at least two different meanings, neither of which belongs here except if Hot Licks’ mishearing was correct. Can you get your teacher to re-phrase the passage at leat two different ways, for clarity? – Robbie Goodwin Jul 9 '18 at 20:28

My English teacher taught me that "I saw him crossed the street" was correct.

Either your teacher is wrong, or you misheard.

"Cross" is a verb and so has to be used correctly - "crossed" in the past tense, "crossing" in the present, etc.

If you intend to express that you saw someone take the action of walking from one side of a street to the other, the correct expression would be:

  • I saw him cross the street
    (if you saw him complete the action)

  • I saw him crossing the street
    (if you saw him in during the action)

  • I saw that he had crossed the street
    (if perhaps you saw him only after he had crossed)

I wonder though if perhaps someone is mishearing the word "across" which is not a verb but a preposition and means on the other side of something.

If you actually heard:

I saw him across the street

This means you were on one side, he was on the other, and you saw him from where you were.


“I saw him crossed the street” is incorrect. Perhaps your teacher meant to say “I saw (that) he crossed the street” in the sense that they [your teacher] noticed that particular person was crossing the street.

If you were to say you saw a person who was crossing the street, you would either say, “I saw him cross the street” (“to cross” in the present tense—not the past tense) or “I saw him crossing the street.”

As for “I saw him to cross the street,” the meaning is a bit different; here, the speaker is saying that they saw someone so that they cross the street. It doesn't mean they saw someone cross the street (i.e., so that they could cross the street).

  • Can you explain how you would use 'saw him to cross...'? I wouldn't ever use that. – Vero Apr 28 '18 at 10:37
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    @Vero - "... him to cross ..." is not a construction that most people would use, but it's legit from the standpoint of grammar. Could have several meanings, depending on context. – Hot Licks Apr 28 '18 at 12:37
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    @vero I agree. I can't think of anybody who would ever use that exact phrase.Even if it's grammatical, its so out the of the ordinary that I can't imagine not rephrasing it. (I'd consider it a typo of "saw him across" or a shortened version of "saw him so that he could cross"—which, itself, makes little sense without context.) – Jason Bassford Supports Monica Apr 29 '18 at 19:49

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