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Developed by Irene Tan

2009

Anna Fauziah
2016

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ADJECTIVE CLAUSES

dependent clauses that must be joined to


independent clauses
describe nouns and pronouns
often placed in a sentence right after the
noun they describe
add details to sentences by functioning as
adjectives

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ADJECTIVE (RELATIVE) CLAUSES
Adjective clauses begin with one of the
relative pronouns such as who, whom,
whose, where , that, which,
Also called relative clauses.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
Who The lady who
Refers to people, teaches in Political
used as subject in Science department
the clause is my mentor.
(Relative pronoun as
the subject of the
clause)

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WHO = as subject
The man is friendly.
He lives next to me.
* The man who lives next to me is friendly.
A man phoned.
He didnt give his name.
* A man who didnt give his name phoned

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1. The people have three cars.
They live next to me.
2. The waitress was friendly.
She served us dinner.
3. Do you like the mechanic?
He fixed your car.
4. Mr. Jackson is the teacher.
He helped me with my math problems.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
Whom Sally, who(m) he knew,
arrived yesterday.
Refers to people, used
(Relative pronoun as the
as object or object of object of the clause)
preposition
The student of whom he
(Formal grammar spoke was a foreigner.
recommends whom, (Relative pronoun as the
object of a preposition)
not who, in the object
position)
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WHOM= as an object
The man was friendly.
I met him.
* The man whom I met was friendly.
The woman thanked me.
I helped her.
* The woman whom I helped thanked me.

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1. The people were nice.
I met them at the party last night.
2. The woman is my sister.
You saw her last night.
3. Mr. Polanski is a mechanic.
You can trust him.
4. The woman gave me some information.
I called her.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
Whose The father whose child
Refers to possession/ownership is missing is frantic!

The company whose


manager has resigned is
in dire straits.

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WHOSE = possession
The woman called the police.
Her car was stolen.
* The woman whose car was stolen called the police.

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1. I know a man. His brother is a movie star.
2. The people are moving to Hawaii. We bought their
house.
3. There is the woman. Her cat died.
4. There is the professor. Im taking her course.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
Which or that The watch which Ken bought
Refers to things, animals was expensive.

The ring that Jamie wears is


from her husband.

The lion that escaped last


night was captured.
(Note: the sentence using which
is more formal than the one
with that)
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WHICH / THAT = subject and object for
things
As a SUBJECT :
The river is polluted.
It flows through town.
* The river which flows through town is polluted.
* The river that flows through town is polluted.
As an OBJECT:
The books were expensive.
I bought them.
* The books which I bought were expensive.
* The books that I bought were expensive.
* The books I bought were expensive.
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1. The phone is mine. It is on the table.
2. The notes helped me a lot. I borrowed them from
you.
3. A lion is an animal. It lives in Africa.
4. I have a class. It begins at 8.00 a.m.
5. I lost the scarf. I borrowed it from my roommate.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
When I will never forget the day
Refers to a time (in + when I graduated.
year, in + month, on + I will never forget the day
day,...). on which I graduated.
It cannot be a subject. I will never forget the
It can be omitted day that I graduated.
I will never forget the
day I graduated.

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WHEN = time
I celebrated my birthday on March 30th.
I met you then (on that date).
* I celebrated my birthday on March 30th when I met
you.

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1. Ill never forget the day. I met you.
2. The moment was great. The clown burst into
surprises the teacher then.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
Where The house where he
Refers to a place (in stays is old .
+ country, in + city, at The house in which
+ school,...). he stays is old.
It cannot be a subject. The house which he
It can be omitted but stays in is old.
a preposition (at, in, The house that he
to) usually must be
stays in is old.
added.
The house he stays in
is old. 19
WHERE = place
Bandar Lampung is a city.
I was born there.
* Bandar Lampung is a city where I was born.

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1. The apartment is modern. She lives there (in
apartment).
2. Did you go to the school? My friend goes there.

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Relative Pronouns & Relative Clauses
Why I dont know why he
Refers to reason winked.
It can be omitted I dont know the
reason why he
winked.
I dont know the
reason he winked.

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Adjective Clauses:
Restrictive & Non-restrictive Clauses
Restrictive Clauses Non-restrictive
Clauses
are necessary for are interesting with extra
identificationtell exactly information -but dont
which thing or person identify or tell which one

DO NOT have commas ALWAYS have commas


around clause around clause
Also known as identifying or Also known as non-
defining clauses identifying or non-defining
clauses
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Restrictive Adjective/Relative Clauses
Examples:
The soccer player who scored the goal
is from Liverpool.
The girl that borrows my book
is my cousin.
The district where I live is near the
post office.
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Non- Restrictive Adjective/Relative Clauses
Examples:

Ms. Tan, who is my English tutor, went to Korea last


winter.
My dog, which is barking, is in the backyard.
William decided to reject the offer, which upset his
manager.

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Compare Restrictive & Non-restrictive
Clauses
1. My brother who lives in Bukit Timah is an accountant.

This sentence suggests that I have more than


one brother. Who lives in Bukit Timah identifies
this brother, not the one who lives in Clementi.

2. My brother, who lives in Bukit Timah, is an accountant.

This sentence suggests that I only have one brother,


who lives in Bukit Timah.

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Which is logically correct?
1. My father, who is a taxi driver, doesnt like to exercise.

2. My father who is a taxi driver doesnt like to exercise.

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Answer
1. My father, who is a taxi driver, doesnt like to exercise.
(Correct!)

2. My father who is a taxi driver doesnt like to exercise.


(This suggests you have more than one father!)

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Which is logically correct?
Situation: You have 3 sisters and you have already
made that clear in preceding sentences. One is a
doctor, one an air stewardess, and one a model.

1. My sister who is a doctor is not married.


2. My sister, who is a doctor, is not married.

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Answer
1. My sister who is a doctor is not married.
(Correct! This tells which sister , so its identifying.)

2. My sister, who is a doctor, is not married.


(Identifying information should not have commas
around it.)

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Which is correct?
1. Paul Smith who is an excellent researcher is from
England.

2. Paul Smith, who is an excellent researcher , is from


England.

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Answer
1. Paul Smith who is an excellent researcher is from
England.
(Note that proper nouns are considered already
identified, so the adjective clause needs commas.)

2. Paul Smith, who is an excellent researcher , is from


England. (Correct!)

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Which is correct?
1. The wind, that is howling, is making me nervous.

2. The wind, which is howling, is making me nervous.

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Answer
1. The wind, that is howling, is making me nervous.
(Never use commas with a that clause.)

2. The wind, which is howling, is making me nervous.


(Correct!)

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References
Cain, J. S. (2003).Eye on Editing 2: Developing Editing
Skills for Writing. New York: Pearson Education
Brizee. A. (Ed.). (2009). Relative Pronouns. OWL
Materials. Retrieved September 1, 2009, from
http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/645/01/

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Web resources
On how to use a relative clause (also links on the page
on defining/restrictive) and non-defining/non-
restrictive relative clauses)
http://esl.about.com/od/grammaradvanced/a/relative_c
lause.htm
A grammar website on relative clauses giving all the
details of relative clauses and provide exercises. If you
want to know relative clauses inside out, visit:
http://www.ego4u.com/en/cram-up/grammar/relative-
clauses
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Videos on Relative Clauses
On defining relative clauses (with movie clips)
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-
486183297429660222#docid=-1240715167746622451
Distinguish the use of who and whom in a relative
clause
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-
486183297429660222#docid=-3595000722742197356

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Powerpoint developed by Irene Tan. Used with
Permission

Proofread and revised by Yang Ying

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