Can the verb 'to be' be used intransitively, as in "I am." OR "It was."?
I don't mean as an answer to a question, when there is all kinds of implied content. I mean as a complete sentence. And I also don't mean in a philosophical context, like "I think, therefore, I am."
We can't say something like "I am happily." We would say "I exist happily." So can we ever use 'to be' in an intransitive sense like 'to exist'?
Note that I mean 'without auxiliaries'. "It cannot be!" uses auxiliaries.
If we can't use 'to be' intransitively, then it shouldn't be able to take adverbs without an object. But oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/here considers 'here' to be only ever an adverb. So "I am here" would be subject/intransitive verb/adverb.
Can someone unwind this conundrum?