Ergative verbs are a type of verbs that can be both transitive and intransitive. In this lesson, we will learn more about this type of verbs.
What Are Ergative Verbs?
Ergative verbs (also called labile verbs or ambi-transitive verbs) are verbs that can be both transitive and intransitive.
A verb that is ergative can be used:
- transitively (followed by the object)
- intransitively (without mentioning the object)
What Are Ergative Verbs Used for?
In an ergative verb use, the subject of the intransitive verb would be the object of the transitive form of the verb. Take a look at these examples:
Remember that the object of the transitive verb, which is the subject of the intransitive verb, usually refers to a thing, not a person.
Common Ergative Verbs
Common ergative verbs in English are:
|Verbs of tranform or change||Verbs of cooking||Verbs of transportation||Verbs of movement|
Take a look at some examples:
Ergative verbs can be both transitive and intransitive verbs. The transitive form can mean the same or a little different from the intransitive verb.