Relative Pronouns and Clauses

Objective: Learn to use relative pronouns and clauses to provide additional information in sentences.

Introduction to Relative Clauses:

Relative clauses add extra information to a sentence by describing a noun. They are introduced by relative pronouns and play a crucial role in providing context and detail.

Relative Pronouns:

  1. Who/Whom:
    • Usage: Refers to people.
    • Example: The person who called me is my friend.
  2. Which:
    • Usage: Refers to animals or things.
    • Example: The book which I borrowed is on the shelf.
  3. That:
    • Usage: Can refer to people, animals, or things.
    • Example: The car that I bought is red.
  4. Whose:
    • Usage: Shows possession.
    • Example: The girl whose brother won the award is in my class.

Types of Relative Clauses:

  1. Defining Relative Clauses:
    • Function: Essential for the sentence’s meaning; cannot be omitted.
    • Example: The book that is on the table is mine.
  2. Non-Defining Relative Clauses:
    • Function: Adds extra information but can be omitted without changing the sentence’s core meaning.
    • Example: My friend Jane, who lives in Paris, visited me.

Punctuation in Relative Clauses:

  1. Commas in Non-Defining Clauses:
    • Rule: Use commas to set off non-defining relative clauses.
    • Example: My sister, who is a doctor, lives in London.

Advanced Tips:

  1. Omitting Relative Pronouns:
    • In defining clauses, the relative pronoun can often be omitted.
    • Example: The person who called me is my friend.
      The person called me is my friend.
  2. Using Prepositions:
    • Be mindful of prepositions that may be used in relative clauses.
    • Example: The city in which I grew up is beautiful.
      The city where I grew up is beautiful.