Is it correct to use the verb to demand with an object like this:

He is demanding my father to pay him $600. (Seinfeld TV show)

I have not seen this kind of usage in the dictionaries. I have found only "an outraged public demanded retribution." But the object here is what they demanded, not the person they demanded it from.

  • I would expect "He is demanding that my father pays him $600."
    – apaderno
    Jul 19, 2013 at 6:48
  • I know the meaning. I asked whether it is a correct usage or not.
    – mosceo
    Jul 19, 2013 at 6:56
  • 2
    The “demand ... to” construction (that is, demand followed by an infinitive as an indirect object) is so wrong that I have trouble believing the quote is correct. Do you have a link to video or a transcript for the quote? Jul 19, 2013 at 19:50
  • I've found out, it is actually without "to" -- "He is demanding my father pay him $600."
    – mosceo
    Jul 20, 2013 at 7:12

1 Answer 1


You typically demand some action. "I demand you leave this house at once", "They demanded that the governor resign", etc.

You can demand an object, like "The customer demanded a refund" or "Hitler demanded the Sudentenland". In such a case the person is demanding that the thing named be given to him, so in a sense you're still demanding an action.

The wording in the example is odd. As kiamlaluno says, a more common wording would be, "He is demanding my father pay him $600" or "He is demanding that my father pay him $600." In either case, he is demanding an action. Saying, "my father to pay him" is a little odd because we don't normally put an infinitive in there.

But in any case, it's still quite common to demand an action.

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