Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Subjects and Objects

Subjects vs Objects

Every correct sentence has its ideal formula. It must have the subject, the predicate, and the object. A correct sentence may have the subject and the predicate, but the ideal sentence always includes the object. These three should harmoniously go together; otherwise, your sentences will encounter those fussy green lines on the computer screen signifying you have a grammatically incorrect sentence composition. Notice the following sentence: Tina smashed the porcelain plates. Can you identify which word is the subject, the predicate, or the object? The subject of the sentence always refers to the doer of the action. The predicate is the verb or the action word or what is being done in the sentence. The object always refers to which or to what and whom the action is being done to. So for the sentence mentioned above, the subject is Tina, the predicate is smashed, and the object is the porcelain plates.

The simplicity of knowing the right formula in writing correct sentences is overwhelming that sometimes it is taken for granted or worse, forgotten. The subject is often confused with the object and vice versa. This is common especially when the sentence is constructed using the passive voice. For example, Michael was murdered by Christian. The subject in this sentence is Michael while the object is Christian. However, if the sentence was written in an active voice: Christian murdered Michael; the subject became Christian while Michael became the object. While the fact that the predicate cannot be mistaken to be another than what it is, the subject and the object really stir confusion. So to understand more about the function of each element, the distinct characteristics that set them apart from each other, and their relationship, read on.

The subject, to begin with, is always the topic of the sentence. It is the who, the what, and the where. The subject is always the main ingredient that makes a sentence delicious when heard or read. A sentence or a clause can never be without the subject. It comes in different forms–a “determinerless” noun phrase (noun phrase headed by a mass noun or phrases in plural form, e.g., Music heals the soul), a determiner phrase (noun phrase introduced by a determiner e.g., A large bird swooped down to snatch its meal) a gerund (verb with –ing used in a noun phrase e.g., Swimming requires synergy of the mind and other elements), and others such as an infinitive, a full clause introduced by a complement that, and a direct quotation.

The object, on the other hand, is always part of the predicate. Observe the sentences: Music heals the soul and A large bird swooped down to snatch its meal where “music” and “a large bird” are the subjects, and the words “soul” and “meal” are the objects of the sentences. You will notice that the object always answers the question “what.” What does the music heal? And what did the large bird swoop down to? The object basically is what the verb is being done to. Like subjects, an object too has its different types. These are direct objects (e.g. Andrea ate the pie. Where pie is the object), indirect object (e.g., They accused her of theft, where her becomes the non-prepositional object of the verb accused, creating a double object), and the prepositional object (e.g., They all went to the steak house, where “the steak house” became the object of the preposition “to” and the prepositional object of the verb “went”).


1.Both subjects and objects are ideal elements of an ideal sentence.

2.The subject refers to the doer of the action or the main topic in the sentence while the object always refers to which, or to what and whom the action is being done to.

3. The subject comes in different forms–a “determinerless” noun phrase, a determiner phrase, a gerund, an infinitive; a full clause introduced by a complement that, and a direct quotation. The object, on the other hand, has different types– the direct object, the indirect object, and the prepositional object.

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1 Comment

  1. Thanks for the explanation it has really helped me understand the difference between the two words.

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