51 Examples of Material Verbs and Related Explanations!


51 Examples of Material Verbs and Related Explanations!

Material Verbs
Written by Rifda Arum

Material Verbs – When studying texts in Indonesian, be it procedural texts, anecdotal texts, explanatory texts, or historical texts, Grameds will definitely find there are linguistic rules that contain material verbs.

Yep, material verbs are the rules that must be followed in the activity of compiling some of these texts so that the written context can be conveyed properly to the reader. Actually, the existence of this material verb is still part of the verb, alias kok .

It’s just that the form is distinguished, especially in the study of semantics alias meaning. So, what are examples of material verbs? What is the definition of this material verb? So, so that Grameds understands these things, let’s look at the following review!

Material Verbs


50+ Examples of Material Verbs

  1. Eat
  2. Mandi
  3. Sweeping
  4. sleep
  5. Open
  6. Writing
  7. Reading
  8. Giving
  9. block
  10. Frying
  11. Rinse
  12. Washing
  13. Kick
  14. Watering
  15. Chewing
  16. Holding
  17. pet
  18. Solve
  19. waving
  20. combing
  21. Pat
  22. Hitting
  23. Buying
  24. Bring
  25. Speak
  26. Singing
  27. Study
  28. Bicycle
  29. Paddling
  30. Knocking
  31. Shoot
  32. Running
  33. Walk
  34. Jumping
  35. fall
  36. Call
  37. Ironing
  38. Gather
  39. Draw
  40. Steaming
  41. Burning
  42. Tidy up
  43. Slamming
  44. Holding
  45. Pouring
  46. Close
  47. pasting
  48. Type
  49. Throw
  50. Repair
  51. Cutting

Material Verbs

What is a Material Verb?

Material Verbs


Basically, material verbs are a type of verb which has affixes and refers to physical activity or actions that can be seen with the naked eye.

The affixes to these material verbs are usually me-, meng-, meng-, and men-. Actually, this material verb is almost part of a transitive verb. Just a little trivia, this transitive verb is a type of verb in terms of its syntactic behavior.

Why can you say that? Because this transitive verb has at least 4 characteristics, namely: (1) it requires a noun as its object; (2) used in active voice; (3) the verbs used mostly have the suffixes me-, meng-, and men-; and (4) when it is changed into a passive form it still “sees” the physical actions it does.

Now, the third and fourth characteristics are almost in line with the definition of the material verb. However, keep in mind that material verbs are not the same as transitive verbs. Even from a study point of view, the discussion is different .

So, the use of material verbs is often used as a linguistic rule for several types of texts in Indonesian. For example, there are explanatory texts, procedural texts, anecdotal texts, to historical texts.

The reason why material verbs are needed in the process of writing some of these texts is because this type of verb shows physical activity or human actions that can be seen with the naked eye.

For example: reading, sweeping, preparing, writing, cooking, boiling, frying, steaming, and others. Try Grameds to think about it once more, some examples of material verbs are indeed human actions that can be seen with the naked eye, right?

Reporting from the Ministry of Education and Culture’s Maluku Language Office website , material verbs which are part of the 3 types of verbs in the semantic aspect can be recognized by the presence of 2 indicators. The first indicator is ‘can be an answer to a question’. Then, the second indicator is ‘can be used as a form of an imperative sentence’. In order for Grameds to understand more about what this material verb is, consider the following explanation regarding the 2 indicators.

The first indicator, namely ‘can be an answer to a question’, is usually closely related to the activities carried out by the subject. For example, there is a question in the form of “Has Meta eaten?”. So, the existence of this material verb can be used as an answer to the question, in the form of “Meta hasn’t eaten since this afternoon.”

Then, in the second indicator, namely ‘can be used as a form of an imperative sentence’, of course it is still related to activities carried out in plain view by the subject. So, command sentences that contain the existence of this material verb can be: “Shower!”, “Sleep!”, “Open!”, and others.

Regarding the affixes contained in this material verb, actually it doesn’t only have to be me-, meng-, meng-, and men-. In fact, not infrequently, material verbs whose physical activity can be seen with the naked eye can also be in the form of basic words, alias without any affixes. For example: sleeping, eating, bathing , and others. It’s just that, most material verbs do use some of these affixes.

That is why, some texts such as procedural texts to explanatory texts really need this material verb because it “presents” the existence of human physical actions that can be seen by the eye. Moreover, in the procedural text which contains steps to make something (be it food or objects) with both hands.

Sentence Structure Using Material Verbs

Reporting from boykampus.com , the use of material verbs in a sentence, of course, must refer to the presence of the right structure. This structure is almost the same as sentence structure in general, namely SPOK alias Subject, Predicate, Object, and Description. So, here’s a sentence structure that uses the verb material.

Subject + Predicate (in the form of a material verb) + Object + Description (optional)

Keep in mind once again, if you want to make a sentence using a material verb, then of course it has to be placed in the predicate, right?

Object word

Re-understanding What is a Verb

Material Verbs


After understanding what are the examples of material verbs along with their definitions and sentence structures, has Grameds understood them clearly? Or even wondering about what the verb is and its types in semantic studies, aka its meaning? Come on, look at the following reviews so you don’t feel confused for too long!

Basically, this verb alias is a type of word in Indonesian. There are 10 types of words, namely bends, adjectives, verbs, pronouns, articles, prepositions, numerals, conjunctions, adverbs, and exclamations.

So, meanwhile according to KBBI (Big Indonesian Dictionary), a verb alias verb is a word that describes a process, action, or situation. 

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If you look at the Indonesian Standard Grammar book, the characteristics of these verbs or verbs can be identified by observing 3 indicators, namely (1) their semantic behavior; (2) its syntactic behavior; and (3) the morphological form.

However, in general, this verb can also be identified and distinguished from several other word classes because it looks so prominent, especially in “showing” physical activity or action in plain view.

The main function of the verb in a sentence is as a predicate, or it can even be considered as the main predicate in a sentence. Although actually, verbs also have other functions, but their main function is as the core of the sentence being explained. Look at the following example sentences!

  • The thief ran .
  • The foreigner will not like Javanese cuisine.
  • They are studying in the living room.
  • The bomb should n’t have exploded .

So, in this example sentence, especially the italicized part is the predicate, namely the part that binds with other parts of the sentence. In short, verbs in the form of “running”, “won’t like”, “studying”, and “not exploding” are verbs alias verbs.

  1. Verbs contain inherent meaning (closely related) to actions (actions), processes, or conditions that are not characteristics or qualities.
  2. On verbs, especially those that have the meaning of state, they cannot be given the prefix ter- which means ‘most’. For example on the verb “die” or “suka”. Of course, it cannot be given the suffix ter- so that it becomes “dead” or “favorite”.
  3. These verb aliases generally cannot be combined with words that express the meaning of ‘excessiveness’. For example in the verbs “study”, “go”, and “work”. Of course, the word affixes cannot be given to “somewhat studied”, “very much going”, and “worked once”. If you want to use these words, you have to adjust the context and class of words, such as “very dangerous”, “rather disappointing”, and “expecting very much”.

Types of Verbs According to Semantic Studies

Material Verbs


According to a book entitled Introduction to Indonesian Semantics by Abdul Chaer, Tampubolon (1988) suggests that there are 12 basic types of verbs in Indonesian that are studied according to Semantics. So, here are the 12 types of basic words.

1. Type I

In this type, the verb semantically expresses an action, deed, or action. Tampubolon also mentions the existence of action verbs (KK), but they are referred to as action-verbs. The actor in this type of verb is a noun which is characterized by meaning, animate, and acts as the activator of the action of the verb.

Example: eat, read, retreat, and others. It should be noted that this type of verb is the most numerous, around 51.3%.

Semantically, type I verbs can also be differentiated into action verbs where: (1) the actor is a human; (2) the perpetrators are human and not human; and (3) the perpetrator is not human.

For example, the verbs “read” and “write” are in a sentence, the culprit must be a human. Meanwhile, in the “patuk” example, the perpetrator is not human.

Try Grameds to imagine if the examples of these verbs are not matched with the appropriate actors, the sentences will definitely be weird, right ?

2. Type II

That is a verb that expresses action and experience. The actor in this type of verb must be a form that is a noun and is characterized by both meaning and animate; and acts as an actuator of the action of the verb.

The main feature of this type of verb is that the actor can experience the action cognitively, emotionally, or sensationally. For example in the verbs “(me) have a crush on” and “(men) answer”.

  • Arga estimated the price of the used motorbike.
  • He answered questions from local residents.

Now, in the two examples of these sentences, the existential alias, the culprit, is carrying out the action while experiencing it directly. It should be noted that in this type II, the subject who performs the action and who experiences it does not have to be the same. It could also be 2 entities alias different actors. Take a look at the following examples!

  • Mr. RT asked us about this problem.

So, in that sentence, “Mr. RT” is the perpetrator; while “we” is the entity that experiences it. Other examples of verbs in type II are: talk, know, threaten, persuade, and others.

3. Type III

That is a verb that expresses action and ownership. The actor in this type of verb is, of course, an entity in the form of a noun characterized by meaning, animate, and acting as the activator of the action. Meanwhile, the owner in the form of a noun is characterized by meaning and life at the same time. Look at the following example sentences with the verbs “buy” and “help”!

  • Reka bought a basket from Pak Fuad.
  • The government helps local residents.

So, in these two examples of sentences it is clear that Reka and the Government play the role of actors; while Pak Fuad and local residents are the owners. In a sense, Mr. Fuad will no longer own these objects and the local residents will get ownership of them. Examples of other type III verbs are pay, rent, ask, give, borrow, receive, and others.

4. Tipe IV

Namely verbs that express action and location (place). That is, this action is expressed by a verb which at the same time “suggests” a location (can be a place of origin, place of being, and place of destination). The actor in this type of verb is a noun which is characterized by meaning, is alive, and experiences the action itself. Meanwhile, the location can be a prepositional phrase. Example:

  • Amelia goes to school.
  • He had just arrived from Surakarta.

In these two examples, even though the phrases “to school” and “from Surakarta” are optional, the verbs that both “suggest” must be present in these phrases. Other examples of this type of verb are fall, put, plunge, run, enter, go home, go up, and others.

5. Type V

Namely the verb that states the process. The subject, of course, is a noun that undergoes a process of changing circumstances or conditions. Look at the following example sentences!

  • The car glass broke .
  • The clove leaves withered .

The two verbs “broke” and “withered” are both causal process verbs, so it seems as if they can answer the question “What happened to the subject?”. Other examples of this type V verbs are: disperse, disappear, arise, sink, run out, appear, rise, light, and others.

6. Type VI

That is a verb that expresses a process-experience. The subject, of course, is an animate noun that undergoes a process of change and is expressed through the verb. Check out the following examples!

  • Mother is worried about the safety of her children.
  • Apparently, you’re tired of me.

Well, the two examples of these sentences, especially in the verbs “anxious” and “bored” are verbs of experience processes. While “Mother” and “you” are the subjects that experience the verb. Other examples of type VI verbs are: hope, doubt, understand, doubt, worry, doubt, surprise, and others.

7. Type VII

Namely a verb that states there is a subject benefactive process in a sentence. Just a little trivia, this beneficial process is related to actions or verbs performed by other people. Meanwhile, the subject that experiences it is a noun that experiences a process or event of gaining or losing (experiencing a loss). Example:

  • Argentina won 2 – 0 over Morocco.
  • He lost 3 million rupiah.

So, in these two examples, especially the verbs “win” and “lose” are benefactive process verbs. While PSSI and Dia become beings who experience the events stated by these verbs. Examples of other type VII verbs are gain, have, lose, get, have, and others.

8. Type VIII

Namely verbs that express locative processes. The subject, of course, is a noun that has undergone a process of changing place (location). Examples are as follows!

  • The sun rises from the eastern horizon.
  • The plane had just arrived from Semarang.

The lexemes “rise” and “arrive” become locative-process verbs, while “plane” and “sun” become entities that experience the processing of these verbs. Other examples of type VIII verbs are falling, advancing, sinking, setting, departing, going, backwards, drifting, descending, and rising.

9. Type IX

That is a verb that expresses a situation. The subject is, of course, a common noun that is in the state or condition stated by the verb. For example!

  • The rice fields there began to dry up.
  • Their faces are always bright.

In these two example sentences, the verbs “dry” and “bright” become conditional verbs; while “their faces” and “the fields” become the forms that experience the verb. Other examples of this type of verbs are busy, broken, diligent, hasty, trembling, silent, miserable, loyal, and clear.

10. Type X

That is a verb that expresses a state of experience. The subject is, of course, a noun that is in a state of cognition, emotion, or sensationalism. For example!

  • He was really afraid of that person.
  • We know living in the city is difficult.

Now, the verbs “fear” and “know” are, of course, verbs for states of experience. Other examples of this type X verb are brave, remember, nauseous, agree, irritated, nervous, anxious, jealous, embarrassed, and others.

11. Type XI

That is a verb that expresses a benefactive state. Meanwhile, the subject is a noun that states having, obtaining, or losing something. For example!

  •  She already has a husband.
  • He has four million rupiah.

In both examples of these sentences, the verbs “have” and “there” are benefactive state verbs. Examples of other verbs in type XI are loss, luck, color, possession, and success.

12. Type XII

That is a verb that expresses a state-locative. The subject is of course a noun that is in a place or location. For example!

  • The farmer stayed in the hut there.
  • The minister was present at the event.

Now, in the two example sentences, the words “silent” and “present” become locative-state verbs. While “farmers” and “ministers” are subjects who experience it in the places mentioned in the description element. Other examples of type XII verbs are flowing, changing, stopping, scattering, dreaming, and going uphill.


Chaer, Abdul. (2002). Introduction to Indonesian Semantics. Jakarta: PT Rineka Cipta

Alwi, Hasan, et al. (2010). Indonesian Standard Grammar Third Edition . Jakarta: Balai Pustaka.

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