Presentation on theme: "Relative pronouns and relative clauses. A relative clause gives information about a noun. It immediately follows the noun it describes and often begins."— Presentation transcript:
Relative pronouns and relative clauses
A relative clause gives information about a noun. It immediately follows the noun it describes and often begins with a relative pronoun such as who, which or when. Defining Relative Clauses They identify the noun they refer to and therefore give necessary information when it comes to the meaning of the sentence. Non-defining Relative Clauses They give additional (extra) information about sth that is already clearly identified and therefore can be left out without affecting meaning. Non defining relative clauses are separated by commas from the rest of the sentence.
Relative pronoun UseExamples Which a.For animals and things b.To refer to a whole clause c. After prepositions in defining clauses The furniture which you ordered will be delivered tomorrow afternoon. (defining) The Maths exam, which many students failed, was far too difficult. (non-defining) Bill took his degree, which is great news. The book to which you are referring is sold out. That (it can only be used in defining relative clauses) a.For people, animals and things; replaces who, which or when in defining relative clauses only b.Often used after words like all, none, little, few, anything, nothing c.After superlatives (often with the present or past perfect), the first/ last time etc. This is the girl that helped me find your address. (defining) There is nothing (that) I need now except a glass of water. This is the best holiday (that) I’ve ever had. Who For people For people She is the candidate who passed the exam. (defining) My sister, who got married last year, is expecting a boy. (non-defining)
Whom a.For people as the direct object of a verb (formal) b. As the indirect object c. After prepositions The actress whom the journalist interviewed was very friendly and willing to answer all the questions. (defining) John, whom I met at university, is one of my best friends. (non – defining) This is the lady to whom you sent the application. Nobody knew the girl with whom Frank was dancing. (defining) OR Nobody knew the girl Frank was dancing with. (informal) Peter, with whom I shared a flat, has now moved to New York. (non – defining) Whose To show possession The woman whose purse was stolen is very upset. (defining) Our neighbors, whose children are very noisy, often get complaints. (non-defining)
Where For places The office where I work is not far from home. (defining) I like the new sports center uptown, where you can find suitable facilities for almost all team sports. (non-defining) When For time (can be replaced by that in defining clauses only) Do you remember the day when we first met? (defining) Last summer, when I was in Santorini, I attended a world class free-running tournament. (non-defining) Why To show reason Emily told me the reason why she doesn’t want to go out with Tim anymore. what To replace the thing (s) which/ that What Angela said made me very upset. (The thing Angela said made me very upset.)
NOTES Who, whom, which or that may be omitted from a defining relative clause when it is the object of the verb in the relative clause. e.g. I didn’t like the film which we saw last night. – I didn’t like the film we saw last night. Hint: If the relative pronoun is followed by a subject and verb it can be left out. If a relative pronoun is used with a preposition, the preposition can come before the relative pronoun (formal style) or at the end of the clause (informal style) e.g. The tool with which the lock was forced open has not been found (formal). The magazine that my article was published in is on the table. (informal) The magazine that my article was published in is on the table. (informal) That and who cannot be used after a preposition. We use which and whom instead. Whom is considered formal. e.g. The company he works for is in serious financial trouble. The company for which he works is in serious financial trouble. The company for which he works is in serious financial trouble. The man for whom he works is from the UK. The man for whom he works is from the UK.
A non-defining relative clause never begins with the relative pronoun that. When a relative clause uses who, which + be + present or past participle, the relative pronoun and the verb to be can be omitted. e.g. Look at those boys who are playing football over there. Look at those boys playing football over there. Look at those boys playing football over there. The food which was served at the wedding was delicious. The food which was served at the wedding was delicious. The food served at the wedding was delicious. The food served at the wedding was delicious. In non-defining clauses quantifiers (e.g. all, none, both, some, many, neither, one, few) can be used with of which/ of whom. e.g. I have two close friends, both of whom live next door. The churches here, many of which need renovating, were built 500 years ago. The churches here, many of which need renovating, were built 500 years ago. To show possession when referring to things we can also use noun + of which or that … of e.g. He wrote a book whose title/ the title of which I’ve forgotten. He wrote a book that I’ve forgotten the title of. He wrote a book that I’ve forgotten the title of.
Which can refer to a whole situation that is described in the main clause. e.g. My friend was obviously lying which annoyed me immensely. (which = the fact that my friend was lying) The words whatever, whoever, whichever, wherever and whenever can be used to replace relative pronouns. We use them to talk about people or things that are. The words whatever, whoever, whichever, wherever and whenever can be used to replace relative pronouns. We use them to talk about people or things that are indefinite or unknown. e.g. Take whatever you want from the boxes over there. (anything you want) Why don’t you just come over whenever you are ready? (any time) Why don’t you just come over whenever you are ready? (any time) What cannot be used as an ordinary relative pronoun after a noun or pronoun. What can replace a noun e.g. We haven’t got the books what you ordered. X We haven’t got the books that you ordered. We haven’t got the books that you ordered. We haven’t got what you ordered. (what = the things that you ordered) We haven’t got what you ordered. (what = the things that you ordered)