Tuesday, 24 August 2010

AAE Q155: relative adverb/pronoun


What is the difference between a relative adverb and a relative pronoun?



Relative Pronouns

relative pronounuseexample
whosubject or object pronoun for peopleI told you about the woman who lives next door.
whichsubject or object pronoun for animals and thingsDo you see the cat which is lying on the roof?
whichreferring to a whole sentenceHe couldn’t read which surprised me.
whosepossession for people animals and thingsDo you know the boy whose mother is a nurse?
whomobject pronoun for people, especially in non-defining relative clauses (in defining relative clauses we colloquially prefer who)I was invited by the professor whom I met at the conference.
thatsubject or object pronoun for people, animals and things in defining relative clauses (who or which are also possible)I don’t like the table that stands in the kitchen.

Relative Adverbs

A relative adverb can be used instead of a relative pronoun plus preposition. This often makes the sentence easier to understand.

This is the shop in which I bought my bike.
→ This is the shop where I bought my bike.

relative adverbmeaninguseexample
whenin/on whichrefers to a time expressionthe day when we met him
wherein/at whichrefers to a placethe place where we met him
whyfor whichrefers to a reasonthe reason why we met him



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