Verbs with 2 objects – Word order

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Word order in English sentences with two objects

If there are two objects in a sentence, the normal word order is:

personthing

Example:

  • I must give my sister a book.
  • I gave Mandy the letter.
  • I gave her the letter.

If the thing is a pronoun, it is put behind the verb.

I must give it to her.


If we want to emphasize the person, we put the person after the thing. Then we use the preposition to.

Let's write the letter to John in California.


Using the words describe, explain, report and say – we always put the person after the thing. Then we use the preposition to.

I explain this rule to you.