Didn't know that trick, but I like it. I think the
purpose was to remember the main verbs which should be
conjugated with auxiliary "être" (to be) in the passé
composé. One says "je suis monté", "je suis resté",
etc, although most verbs use auxiliary "avoir" (j'ai
mangé, j'ai voyagé...). The verbs in the list are
indeed intransitive, they express a state, a change of
state, or in several cases a movement.

There can hardly be all of them here. For ex, we have
"venir" and "retourner", but there is also "revenir"
(to come back). Also "apparaître" (to appear)": "la
difficulté est apparue" (but: la difficulté a disparu;
probably because it is unpleasant to say "a apparu").

Some intransitive verbs are conjugated with "avoir",
though: j'ai couru (I ran), j'ai nagé (I swam)...

One has to be careful, for instance with "monter": it
is intransitive, and conjugated with "être", when the
meaning is "to go up", but transitive, and conjugated
with avoir, in the case of "monter un cheval" (to ride
a horse). The same with "rentrer" (rentrer les foins =
to bring hay back from the fields into the barn). Etc.

--- Etak <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Hello!
>    When I was doing French in highschool, my teacher
> taught us that all of the French intransitives fit
> into the acronym "Mrs. Vandertramp".  They were:
> M - monter
> R - rester
> S - sortier
> V - venir
> A - arriver
> N - naitre (i circumflex)
> D - descendre
> E - entre
> R - returner
> T - tomber
> R - rentre
> A - aller
> M - mourir
> P - partir
>    This struck me as a very small list when I first
> learned it.  I am curious.  Does anyone know of any
> other intransitives or does this list cover them
> all?
> (Intransitives are verbs that don't take a direct
> object, right?  That's what I learned, but I've
> since
> become much confused with all the talk of
> ditransitives and such.  I thought all verbs could
> take a direct and indirect object except the
> intransitive now I'm not so sure of even
> them anymore.  Can someone please explain all this
> transitivity, and multi-transitivity?)
>    Anyway, I hope this list helps Trebor and other
> interested persons. :)
> ---Etak

Philippe Caquant

"Le langage est source de malentendus."
(Antoine de Saint-Exupery)

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