An Investigation into Verb Direction in English and Persian

  •  Mohammad Abdollahi-Guilani    
  •  Mohamad Subakir Mohd Yasin    
  •  Tan Kim Hua    
  •  Khadijeh Aghaei    


This paper compares several types of verbs in English and Persian in terms of direction. The direction of verbs seems to be potentially problematic for the Iranian EFL learners. English verbs can be formed by affixation and compounding. Even proper names and names of animals and products can be used as simple verbs. Persian is poor in this respect, and most verbs are formed via a limited number of affixes or by the productive process of verb collocation. English verbs seem more flexible in switching to intransitive or transitive modes, while Persian requires morphological transformation. The use of prepositions with objects can pose problems for the Iranian EFL learners. In one language, the focus of the sentence is on the subject while in the other, emphasis is directed to the object. Adverbs and prepositional phrases can be inherently stored in the English verb, while Persian has to openly express them.

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