Introducing Relative Clauses: Who, Whose, Whom, Which or That?

A subordinate clause is part of a sentence that depends on a main clause for its meaning. Relative clauses, which you may encounter in both defining and non-defining form, are types of subordinate clauses that work in specific ways. You can normally recognise a relative clause within a sentence because it will begin with a word such as ‘which’, ‘that’, ‘who’, ‘whose or ‘whom’. First, we will focus on the uses of ‘that’ and ‘which’ in defining and non-defining clauses. The word ‘define’ gives you a clue to the purpose of the clause. A defining (relative) clause does just that: it defines the noun, or subject, of the sentence it is part of. The defining clause is an essential part of the …

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‘That’ and ‘Which’: Which is Correct, and When?

Knowing when to use ‘that’ and when to use ‘which’ in certain sentences can be confusing—in fact, getting the two mixed up is an error that even experienced and effective writers make. So what’s the difference between the two, and how can you tell which is the correct word to use? It doesn’t have to be as complicated as some people might have you believe, and this week’s post explains the simple rules you can remember to make the right ‘that’ or ‘which’ choice. First, it’s important to understand what part of a sentence requires you to choose between ‘that’ and ‘which’: a clause. A clause is a unit of words that either forms part of a sentence, or functions …

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