Relative Clauses (3) - Other Relative Pronouns
Aug 27, 2016 Grammar 2074 Views
We always use a relative clause beginning with whose + noun, particularly in written English, when we talk about something belonging to or associated with a person. Compare:
Example(1): Stevenson is an architect. Her designs have won international praise.
Example(1): Stevenson is an architect (whose) designs have won international praise.
Example(2): Dr Rowan has had to do all his own typing. His secretary resigned two weeks ago.
Example(2): Dr Rowan, (whose) secretary resigned two weeks ago, has had to all his own typing.
We can use 'whose' in both defining and non defining relative clauses. We sometimes use 'whose' when we are talking about things, in particular when we are talking about towns or countries, and organizations:
Example: The film was made in Botswana, (whose) wildlife parks are larger than those in Kenya.
Example: We need to learn from companies (whose) trading is more healthy than our own.
Example: The newspaper is owned by the Mearson Group, (whose) chairman is Sir James Box.
We can also use 'whose' when we are talking about particular items, although it is often more natural in spoken English to avoid sentences like this:
Example: I received a letter, (whose) poor spelling made me think it was written by a child (more natural would be I received a letter,and its poor spelling... )
We often use the words where, when and whereby as relative pronouns. But in formal English in particular,a phrase with preposition + which can often be used instead:
Example: This was the place (where) we first met (or... the place at / in which we... )
Example: He wasn't looking forward to the time (when) he would have to give evidence to the court (or... the time at which he would... )
Example: Do you know the date (when) we have to submit the first essay? (or... the date on/ by which we have to submit the first essay?)
Example: The government is to end the system (whereby) farmers make more money from leaving land unplanted than from growing wheat.(or... the system in/ by which farmers... )
We can also use 'why' as a relative pronoun after the word season. In formal English we can use 'that' instead of 'why':
Example: I didn't get a pay rise, but this wasn't the reason (why) I left. (or... the reason (that) I felt.)
We sometimes use relative clauses beginning with who or what. In this case, 'who' means 'the people that' and 'what' means something like 'the thing (s) that':
Example: Can you give me a list of who's been invited?
Example: I didn't know 'what' to do next.
Notice that we can't use 'what' in this way after a noun:
Example: I managed to get all the books (that) you asked for (not... books what you asked for.)
Relative clauses beginning with 'whatever, whoever, or whichever' are used to talk about things or people that are indefinite or unknown:
Example: I'm sure I'll enjoy eating (whatever) you cook.
Example: Whoever wins will go on to play Barcelona in the final.
I hope this article will be helped the learners of English to write down meaningful sentences. Moreover, learners can study about relative pronouns in my article.