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Grammar Corner: Adjective Clause

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  1. coral_reef

    coral_reef New Member

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    Adjective clauses (relative clauses) are like "sentences inside sentences." The "job" of adjective clauses is to modify (describe, identify, make specific) the noun phrases that they follow. In their full forms, adjective clauses have several parts: a relative pronoun (or, insome cases, another kind of connecting word), a subject,and a predicate (a verb and, often, other types of words which follow it).

    In adjective clauses, the relative pronoun is a kind of connecting word: it joins the information in the clause to the noun phrase that it follows. Without the adjective clause, the meaning of the modified noun phrase (and of the sentence) is unclear and incomplete.

    Examples (full forms):

    I know a person who / that can help you.
    I know a person who(m) / that you can help.
    I know a person whose advice I can trust.
    I know a person to whom I can refer you. /
    I know a person who(m) / that I can refer you to.

    I want a car that / which gets good gas mileage.
    I can't afford the car that / which I really want.

    Types of Adjective Clauses

    1. "Subject Pattern" Clauses

    In this type of adjective clause, the relative pronoun is the subject of the clause. Subject
    pattern clauses can, however, modify both subjects and objects of sentences:

    The man who / that talked to us was very friendly.

    Do you know the man who / that talked to us?


    2. "Object Pattern" Clauses

    In this type of adjective clause, the relative pronoun is the object of the clause (but
    an object pattern clause can modify both subjects and objects of sentences):

    The people who(m) / that we met seemed very friendly.

    The people to whom / that we were speaking seemed very friendly. /
    The people who(m) / that we were speaking to seemed very friendly.

    I recently saw the people to whom / that we were talking. / I recently saw the people
    who(m) / that we were talking to.


    3. Clauses Showing Possession

    Here, the relative pronoun is possessive and is attached to another word in the
    adjective clause:

    The people whose names are called will work the first shift.

    Do you know the student whose brother won a gold medal in the Olympics?

    Source: Grammar in Writing-Longman
    __________________
     
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  2. coral_reef

    coral_reef New Member

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    Adjective Clauses (#2)

    Subject Pattern Clauses

    There are several types of adjective (relative) clauses, each with its own rules for form. One type is often referred to as subject pattern clauses because in them, the relative pronoun (the words introducing the clauses) are the grammatical subjects of the clauses.

    Examples:

    1. A man spoke to us. The man was wearing a green suit. --->

    A man who (that*) was wearing a green suit spoke to us.

    The sentence with who has an adjective clause: who was wearing a green suit. In the clause,
    who is the subject. The clause modifies (describes, explains, specifies) the subject of
    the sentence: a man.

    2. We hadn't met the man. The man was wearing a green suit. ---> We hadn't met the man who (that*) was wearing a green suit.

    Again, the sentence with who has an adjective clause: who was wearing a green suit. In
    the clause, who is again the subject, but the clause modifies the object of the main sentence:
    the man.

    3. The new car is parked outside. The new car belongs to Bob. --->

    The new car that (which*) is parked outside belongs to Bob.

    The sentence with that has an adjective clause: that is parked outside. In the clause, that
    is the subject., and the clause modifies the subject of the main sentence: the new car.


    4. I don't like the new car. The new car is parked outside. --->

    I don't like the new car that (which*) is parked outside.

    The sentence with that has an adjective clause: that is parked outside. In the clause, that
    is the subject, but the clause modifies the object of the main sentence: the new car.

    Special Notes:


    1. Adjective clauses come after the nouns that they modify:

    wrong: A man was wearing a green suit who spoke to us.

    right: A man who was wearing a green suit spoke to us.

    wrong: The new car belongs to Bob that is parked outside.

    right: The new car that is parked outside belongs to Bob.


    2. Do not use both a subject pronoun and a relative pronoun:

    wrong: A man who he was wearing a green suit spoke to us.

    right: A man who was wearing a green suit spoke to us.

    wrong: The new car that it is parked outside belongs to Bob.

    right: The new car that is parked outside belongs to Bob.


    3. The relative pronouns who and that are used to refer to people, but who is more common.

    4. The relative pronouns that and which are used to refer to things, but that is more common.

    5. The relative pronoun that cannot be used in nonrestrictive clauses (which will be
    explained later).

    6. Adjective clauses are sometimes described as dependent clauses because they make no
    sense by themselves: they need the words of the main sentences to which they are attached
    in order to show complete thoughts.
     
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  3. coral_reef

    coral_reef New Member

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    Adjective Clauses (#3): Types of Adjective Clauses

    More on Subject Pattern Clauses


    In addition to the general information that we've already seen, subject pattern adjective (relative) clauses have some special characteristics:

    1. Reductions: Clauses with BE

    When a subject-pattern adjective clause contains BE, the relative pronoun and BE can often* be omitted:

    The woman who is talking to Janet is her sister. ---> The woman talking to Janet is her sister.

    That man who is from Sweden speaks six languages. ---> That man from Sweden speaks six languages.

    The people who were injured in the accident were friends of mine. ---> The people injured in the accident were friends of mine.

    The people who have been elected have very high qualifications. ---> The people elected have very
    high qualifications.

    The skates that are beside the door belong to my brother. ---> The skates beside the door belong to
    my brother.

    The meeting that's on Saturday is very important. ---> The meeting on Saturday is
    very important.


    2. Rephrasing: Clauses with HAVE

    When an adjective clause contains HAVE (meaning "own," "possess," or "is characterized by"), another
    kind of change is possible:

    Do you know anyone who has change for a dollar? ---> Do you know anyone with change for a dollar?

    There's only one person who has blond hair in my class. ---> There's only one person with blond hair
    in my class.

    I live in the house that has the palm tree in front. ---> I live in the house with the palm tree in front.

    She likes food that has lots of hot spices. ---> She likes food with lots of hot spices.


    3. Rephrasing: Clauses with HAVE

    When adjective clauses contain BE wearing, BE wearing can be changed to in:

    The woman who is wearing the green silk suit isa doctor. --> The woman in the green silk suit
    is a doctor.

    The man who is wearing the red plaid shirt is my brother. ---> The man in the red plaid shirt
    is my brother.

    Special Notes:

    1. "Dropping" the relative pronoun + BE is most common in these situations:

    a. when the verb in the adjective clause is progressive:

    a man who was wearing a green suit ---> a man wearing a green suit

    the woman who is sitting beside you ---> the woman sitting beside you

    the dog that is barking so loudly ---> the dog barking so loudly

    b. when the verb in the adjective clause is passive:

    a watch that was given to me by my grandfather ---> a watch given to me by my grandfather

    jewelry that was made in Indonesia ---> jewelry made in Indonesia

    music that was composed by Chopin ---> music composed by Chopin

    parts that were manufactured in China ---> parts manufactured in China

    c. when the verb in the adjective clause is followed by a prepositional phrase:

    the chair that is next to yours ---> the chair next to yours

    a businessman who is from Macau ---> a businessman from Macau

    my appointments that are in the afternoon ---> my appointments in the afternoon

    Important: The relative pronoun and BE are not "dropped" when BE is followed
    by an adjective:

    people who are lonely / wrong: *people lonely

    a movie that is really exciting / wrong: a movie really exciting


    2. Do not change a relative pronoun + HAVE when HAVE does not mean "own," "possess," or "is characterized by":

    a thing that has to be done ---> wrong: *a thing with done

    women who have (="give birth to") premature babies ---> wrong: *women with premature babies


    people who have a good time ---> wrong: *people with a good time (wrong)
     
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