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Hello, everyone. I'm Jade. What we're looking at today is "verb" + "to". These are... You
could call them a group of verbs, and they always need to have "to" after them, plus
they always need to have an object. And the reason they need to have an object is because
they're transitive verbs. And that's a grammar word that means: this verb needs to have an
object, otherwise it's incorrect and it's not good English.
So we're looking at some of the verbs that I come across a lot that people get wrong.
So they're using... They're not using a "to" when they use that verb, and we're looking
at that. So, let's start and check how much you actually know with a couple of sentences.
So, our first sentence: "He phoned to me." What do you think about that one? Is that
right? Is that one wrong? Well, "phone" is not in this group of verbs. It's not a transitive
verb. We don't need "to" with that one. Now it's correct. "He phoned me."
What about this one? "I need to speak to him." How is that one? Is that one good English?
"I need to speak..." This one... This bit's okay. This is not "verb" + "to" here. This
is just the infinitive. When we have one verb, and then we're following it with another verb
in the present simple, that's why that "to" is there. That's not what we're talking about.
But after "speak", is it right here? Yes. In this example it's right. But I'm a very
naughty person, because I didn't put a full stop there. There should be a full stop there.
And let's look at this example: "Who am I speaking to?" Or sometimes: "Whom am I speaking
to?" What about this one? Is this one correct? Yeah, they're both correct. In speech, you'll
probably hear: "Who am I speaking to?" But formally, it would be: "Whom" with an "m"
written out, or sometimes said in speech that way.
So now, let's look at examples of "verb" + "to". These are all verbs that you should
be using with "to" after them. And what I usually observe is people using these verbs,
but without the "to", and it doesn't sound right then. So let's look at some example sentences.
"Speak to": "I don't speak to Sarah." And notice how the "to" doesn't sound like "to"
anymore. "I don't speak to Sarah." It just becomes a schwa. We don't... We don't say
it like the individual word itself.
Next example. "Talk to": "Talk to them for me." Don't know what accent that was; it just
kind of came out. Yeah, we talk to someone, we need an object.
"Listen to", this is very good advice for all people: "You should listen to me." It'd
be worth it. Trust me. Here's a gap. Nothing to learn here.
But now we've got "reply to": "I'm sure he'll reply to us." I almost put: "I'm sure he'll
reply to me", and then it felt a bit personal, so I put "us" there.
Next example, "write to", you always write to someone, but what I commonly hear people
not using "to" with this one. "I'll write to them a.s.a.p." Clever points for you if
you know what that means. That means "as soon as possible".
And "belong to": "Excuse me, does this belong to you?" You don't want to have someone come
up to you and ask you that at the train station. You get in trouble in England for that.
When we come back, we're going to look at some more examples of "verb" + "to".
Let's take a look at common errors with "verb" + "to". So with these... These verbs here,
even though they feel like or seem like they're similar to the verbs that we looked at before
because they're to do with communication, these ones don't take "to". So sometimes I'm
observing mistakes with these verbs, and that's what I want you to know.
So in our example sentences, these are all wrong. We need to make changes.
"I phone to him." No "to". We don't need "to".
"She called to me." No "to". You're starting to get it now - no "to".
"We emailed to them." No "to".
"They won't answer to us." Again, no "to".
"Will you ask to Sarah?" Again, no "to". We don't need "to" with these verbs.
What else is there to know? Well, if you... If you want to speak American English, know
that there's an exception. In British English, we can't say this. "He wrote me." Can't say
that; doesn't work in British English. But in colloquial/informal American English, it's
okay. And I just want to point out one that I'm hearing a lot: "They replied me." It's
not okay in British English and it's not okay in American English either. Maybe... Maybe
language is evolving a bit, and that's why people are saying it, but as it stands - not
okay. I hear this one quite a lot.
When we come back, we're taking a look at making questions with "verb" + "to".
One issue you should know about "verb" + "to" is that when we do questions, some people
don't like it. Some people don't like it to say: "Who is he speaking to?" For them, it's
really ugly. They don't like it. But there's a way to avoid it. If you want to avoid it,
you have to change the position of your sentence. So, "to" goes from the end to the beginning,
and importantly, then you need to change your pronoun. So "who" has to change to be "whom".
When this pronoun is in the object position of a sentence, that's when we add the "m".
Anyway, you don't really need to worry about the grammar, the why, because it's confusing
when I talk about object and subject for a lot of people who don't know about grammar.
All you need to do is just learn how to rearrange it. So you move "to" to the beginning, and
then it's always "To whom", and then you finish the rest of the words. And that way, you don't
have "to" at the end. In informal or neutral speech, this is really common. People will
say this, but it can be seen as inelegant or not very sophisticated if you write it.
I probably wouldn't write it myself. Yeah, maybe in chat or something, but not in...
Not in a proper letter or something.
Here's another. Here's another example. Let's see here: "Who did you write to?" Well, we
don't want to finish with "to", so we need to rearrange. Again, it comes to be "To whom",
that's easy; we just did the same. "To whom did you write?" And the verb, the main verb
goes at the end. The auxiliary verb is next to "whom", so we just change the order like that.
That's all I'm going to tell you about "verb" + "to". If you want to do more practice, please
go to the EngVid website. You can do a quiz, 10 questions in a quiz, and that way, you
know next time you need to use these verbs-"speak to", "talk to", all those verbs-you know that
you're saying them in the right way; you're using "to" when it's needed, and in those
exceptions that I mentioned to you, you know you're not using "to" where it doesn't belong.
If you like this lesson, I'd really appreciate it if you subscribe to the channel. And have
I mentioned everything? I think I mentioned everything. So that's all I'm going to talk about today.
Please come back and watch me again. And yeah, until next time. Bye.
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Grammar: How to use TO with transitive verbs

3000 Folder Collection
22 published on May 27, 2015
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