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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > How to tell if a relative pronoun is a subject or an object of a relative clause?    

How to tell if a relative pronoun is a subject or an object of a relative clause?



hheyitsme
Tunisia

How to tell if a relative pronoun is a subject or an object of a relative clause?
 
Basically the title says it all. It frustrates me not to know how to explain this to my students. Please help!

3 Jun 2017      



Pedro14
Spain

The relative pronouns "who", "which", and "that" are the subject of a relative clause when the verb of the subordinate clause, that is to say, the relative clause, is not preceded by any subject pronoun or noun.  Here you have some examples:
 
- The person who / that you were talking to yesterday is my best friend. ( Here the verb of the relative clause is preceded by a subject pronoun, so the relative pronouns "who" or "that" are the direct object of the subordinate clause)
-The person who / that was talking to you yesterday is my best friend. (Here, however, you can see that the verb of the relative clause is not preceded by any subject pronoun or noun; that means that the relative pronouns "who" or "that" are the subject of the relative clause.)
- The money that / which I found in the street yesterday belongs to you. (that / which are direct objects of the relative clause)
-The money that / which was found in the street yesterday belongs to you. (that / which are the subject of the relative clause)
 
Hope this helps you. Wait for the answer of other members, though. 
 

4 Jun 2017