Difference Between Object and Complement l Object vs Complement

The key difference between object and complement is that an object is a noun or noun equivalent denoting the goal or result of the action of a verb whereas complement is a noun, phrase or clause that adds additional information about the subject or object.

Object and complement are two of the main five elements of a sentence. Both these elements follow the verb of a sentence. Moreover, an object can also be a part of a complement.


1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is an Object
3. What is a Complement
4. Relationship Between Object and Complement
5. Side by Side Comparison – Object vs Complement in Tabular Form
6. Summary

What is an Object?

An object is a noun or a noun phrase that follows the verb. It usually refers to the action done by the verb. There are two types of objects as direct objects and indirect objects.

Direct Object

A direct object indicates who or what the action of the verb affects. For example, in the sentence ‘Adam hit John’, John is the object since he is the one affected by the verb. Some more examples for direct objects are as follows:

I wrote a long letter.

Indians eat rice.

He kissed her.

The best way to identify the direct object in a sentence is by isolating the verb and making it into a question by placing ‘whom?’ or ‘what?’ For instance, Indians eat what? – Rice