Can you explain this lesson to me please? I really get stupid at. I really would be grateful for your help Relative clauses – defining relative clauses Relative clauses add extra information to a sentence by defining a noun. They are usually divided into two types – defining relative clauses and non-defining relative clauses. Defining relative clauses Look at this sentence: The woman who lives next door works in a bank. ‘who lives next door’ is a defining relative clause. It tells us which woman we are talking about. Look at some more examples: Look out! There’s the dog that bit my brother. The film that we saw last week was awful. This is the skirt I bought in the sales. Can you identify the defining relative clauses? They tell us which dog, which film and which skirt we are talking about. Relative pronouns Relative clauses are often introduced by a relative pronoun (usually who, which, that, but when, where and whose are also possible) With defining relative clauses we can use who or that to talk about people. She’s the woman who cuts my hair. She’s the woman that cuts my hair. And we can use that or which to talk about things. The dog that bit my brother. The dog which bit my brother. It is also sometimes possible to omit the relative pronoun. This is the skirt that I bought in the sales. This is the skirt which I bought in the sales. This is the skirt I bought in the sales. In this sentence ‘skirt’ is the object of the verb (buy). ‘I’ is the subject. When the relative pronoun is the object, it can be omitted. The film we saw last week was awful. BUT The dog bit my brother. This is not possible because the dog is the subject of the verb, ‘bite’.
Sep 21, 2012 10:42 AM
Answers · 2
Well, there are two types of relative clauses: defining and non-defining. Defining relative clauses tell us which person or thing ( or what kind of person or thing) the speaker means, while non-defining relative clauses give us extra information about the person or thing and in these clauses we use commas (,). 1) Let us use your example: The woman who lives next door works in a bank. ('who lives next door' is defining relative clause, if we wrote: The woman works in a bank. without this relative clause, then we wouldn't know which woman we are talking about,, but if we say The woman who lives next door works in a bank. then we know that the woman who works in the bank is the woman who lives next door, so we know who she is.) 2) My brother Jim, who lives in London, is a doctor. ('who lives in London' is non-defining relative clause, because we already know who we are speaking about, it just gives us extra information. If we wrote the sentence without this clause, it would be: 'My brother Jim is a doctor.' and we could say just that, but if we add 'who lives in London' then we know something more about him. If you can rewrite the sentence without relative clause, then it is non-defining relative clause, but if your sentence does not make sense without relative clause and you do not know who you are talking about then it is defining relative clause. Relative pronouns are: who, which, whose, that... We use who only for people, which for animals and things, and we can use that for both people and things. If there is anything else you don't understand, just ask
September 22, 2012
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