I received this question:

Hi. I have a quick question for you. My son and I are stumped on Henle’s explanation of intransitive verbs. In Henle grammar 739 it says that intransitive verbs take a sole object in the dative. The example sentence is “The wind injured the ships”.


 In English this is a classic example.of a transitive verb taking a direct object. I see that ships is the only object (sole object), but we can not see what make a verb transitive or intransitive besides memorizing it as so. In other words there seems to be no logical explanation as there is in English: If it has a direct object it is transitive; If it does not it is indirect object. Is there something we are missing in the rules of verbs in Latin here?
– Erin

Here is my reply:


Here is a link to the online Latin dictionary, William Whitaker’s Words: http://archives.nd.edu/words.html