Relative clauses 1

Relatives clauses are short phrases beginning with words like who, that and which that define or describe people and things. There are two


1) Defining relative clause: we use these to identify exactly which person or thing we mean. The information is necessary for the sentence to make sense.

The doctor who treated metold me not to worry.

2) Non – defining relative clauses: we use these to give extra information.

The information is not necessary for the sentence to make sense. To show this in writing we use commas.

Pablo Picasso, who died in 1973,was a painter and sculptor.

Relative pronouns: which, that

Which refers to things and that refers to people and things. That is more common, especially in speech.

The bus which goes to China leaves from here.

The woman that we spoke to gave us directions.

Who, whom

Who and whom refer to people.

In formal speech and writing we can use whom instead of who where who is the object of the sentence. We can also use whom after a preposition.

However, this is becoming less common and modern English speakers

rarely use whom instead they use who or that.

The people who live next door make a lot of noise.

It was the same boy whom I met yesterday.


Whose shows that something belongs to someone.

The girl whose case had been stolen went to the police station.

Lesson 4

Relative clauses 2

Combining sentences:

We can combine the sentences using relative clauses.

The bus that goes to Cairo leaves from here.

The woman whoteaches us music also plays in an orchestra.

Note that articles often change when sentences are combined.

A girl`s case was stolen. She went to the police station.

The girl whose case was stolen went to the police station.

Relative clauses with an ing form:

The relative clause often has a continuous verb form:

I sent a card to the girl living across the street.

What as a relative pronoun: we can use relative pronoun what to mean the things that

We didn`t understand what she said.

Lesson 4