Rendre is to return an object that was taken.
Retourner is to return or go back there (where the speaker isn't)
rendre and retourner are both transitive verbs.
Revenir is to come back or return here (where the speaker is)
Rentrer is to re-enter or return home.
revenir and rentrer are intransitive verbs.
Please check the link ThanKwee posted.
Transitive verbs require an object. "I throw" is not right by itself; the verb "throw" requires an object: "I throw the stick". "I open" - what? "I open the window". Transitive verb.
Intransitive verbs can stand alone without an object: "I talk", "I run", "I laugh"
Hope that helps.
Only in English, though. French transitive verbs may have an indirect object by itself (Sitesurf mentioned this strange distinction once.....I wish I could find that comment). For example, demander à is transitive in French, even though it only takes an indirect object (e.g. "je veux demander à toi").
@YahyaZuhair - Oh, but your example is incomplete. It does indeed mention "demander à (quelqu'un) - to ask (someone) to" - but the "to" is significant. You ask someone to do something, and that infinitive phrase is in fact the direct object of the sentence. And in French, it is "demander à (quelqu'un) de faire quelque chose" - exactly the same situation.
Here is an illustration of a similiar situation in an English sentence, where the phrase "to open the box" is the direct object of the verb "began"
And here's a discussion of the same kind of thing:
@luolimao: "Larousse says that for a verb to be intransitive, it has to..."
Although Larousse says the transitive verb takes both direct or indirect object, it just says that the intransitive verbs don't take a direct object, without mentioning anything about indirect objects.
@luolimao: "Where does it mention direct objects? It says (for intransitive verbs), "verbe exprimant une action limitée..."
Generally, 'complément d'objet' refers to 'complément d'objet direct' and not 'complément d'objet indrect'
The French refer to direct objects as 'object', and they do not specify unless it was necessary to differentiate between direct and indirect.
I remember someone saying such thing here on Duolingo, most probably Sitesurf.
However, I feel where the confusion comes from.
I did a research about transitive and intransitive verbs after this disscussion, different sources mention different things; some say intransitive verbs don't take an object, whether direct or indirect. Others only specify direct.
I, personally, will stick with intransitives don't take a direct object, until someone tell me what L'Académie Française say about this.
Where does it mention direct objects? It says (for intransitive verbs), "verbe exprimant une action limitée au sujet et qui n'admet pas de complément d'objet" -- a verb expressing an action limited to a subject and that doesn't admit an object (edit: complement). I believe direct object in French, is "complément d'objet direct" (COD), no?
Edit: Ah, didn't realize that an object complement includes/implies a direct object. I see your point. Unless object complements in French are different, in which case we're back to the debate at hand......
Thankwee's link no longer works. See here:
RoboGirl isn't the best role model for pronunciation, but she says this reasonably well. "Reviennent" does sound different, as LaurenG19 says, but when a language is new, sometimes one must train one's ear.
A good resource for pronunciation, I find, is Google Translate - you can put a word or phrase in the box, choose "French", and click the "Listen" icon in the lower right corner. Try alternating "il revient" and "ils reviennent" to hear the difference.