What I observe is campus cafe is a direct object, it receives the action, went is an action verb so it should be transitive. But here: http://www.chompchomp.com/terms/intransitiveverb.htm it says it is intransitive. Can someone explain what is my mistake?

1 Answer 1


The error is that "Campus cafe" is not the direct object of the verb "went." "Campus cafe" is the object of the preposition "to". You might want to read Chompchomp's article about direct objects.

They (Chompchomp) are right that "went" is intransitive. That means we don't say, "James went the cafe." If you want to say where James went, you can use "to" (a preposition): "James went to the cafe."

  • 1
    You may be right, but it's kind of splitting hairs. You can't say "James went" by itself, so it's problematic to call it an intransitive verb. There's probably some other term that applies, although I don't know what it would be.
    – Andrew
    Aug 12, 2019 at 5:15
  • Then why can we say James went home, James went crazy, or James went bar hopping? We don't use to with those expressions. It seems to me that the presence of lack of to has more to do with what follows it than the verb itself. So, I don't think the to is a good indicator of it being transitive or intransitive. Aug 12, 2019 at 5:21
  • @Andrew a transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object. Objects are virtually always NPs. "To school" in "James went to school" can be considered a locative complement Aug 12, 2019 at 7:04
  • @Jason "Home" is a preposition and therefore does not function as object. "Crazy" is a predicative complement. "Bar-hoping" is either an adjunct or a complement but it's more likely to be a complement. An object is virtually always realized by an NP. "Went" is clearly intransitive here. Aug 12, 2019 at 7:12
  • 1
    @Andrew, I'm not sure I agree that "you can't say James went by itself." *Did he stay or did he go? -- James went. It is fine for "to go" to be an intransitive verb. Aug 12, 2019 at 10:10

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .