What are Relative Pronouns?

relative clause

The Invisible Thread: The Narrative for Relative Pronouns

Think of a sentence like a piece of tapestry. The soul of the text is occupied by nouns and verbs as if they are the most dynamic strings of the story. Yet, there will be moments when relative pronouns will portray themselves as the 3rd person that others do not see, but a colossal string that connects one part of the patchwork to another. These modest heroes of grammar are the key players in the structure of relative clauses and the provision of information that will help you in writing. 

What are Relative Pronouns?

In contrast with the showcase pronouns (that is 'I' and 'you'), relative pronouns are team players. They stay in the background, doing their job. They link a relative determiner which is used to add extra information related to the main clause. 

Think of it this way

  • Main Clause: The woman who lives next door is a doctor.  
  • Relative Clause: The man living in the house on the right

The relative pronoun "who" that modifies the relative clause "who lives next door" is one of the defining genitive cases of the sentence as it tells which woman is being discussed in the main clause. 

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The World of Relatives: Making a Difference by Trying Other Options

The realm of relative pronouns is populated by a few key players.

  • Who/Whom: Personification refers to an individual (it may be a female or a male) with the ideal influence.  It still proves to be a mentor for me. 
  • Which: This can be used for both people and animals ("My friend has borrowed this book.  It is engaging). 
  • That: This can be applied to both people and objects ("The house that you built is beautiful.”)

Beyond the Basics: And the Understanding of How Relative Pronouns Are Used

Relative pronouns function in different ways within a sentence:

  • Subject: Hence, they can function as the noun of the relative clause ("The woman who lives next door is a doctor, ")
  • Object: Moreover, they can also be the subject of the relative clause ("This is the book which I borrowed from the library).
  • Possessive: They can sometimes work like possessives to create the expression of possession ("This is the friend whose birthday it is.")
  • Seeing it in Action: Accomplish Speech through the Help of the Relative Pronouns

Let us see how relative pronouns enhance sentence structure

The scientist who first discovered penicillin changed the world of medicine. However, the new inventions have created both possibilities and problems that need to be addressed by the collective efforts of individuals and society. 

The Award Winner was a movie that had a very special message for mankind. (The movie industry is still struggling, but it is a part of the same sentence as "the movie"). 

While relative pronouns are powerful tools, there can be some pitfalls:

  • Misusing "that" and "which": "That" is a general term that applies to both persons and things, while "which" is specific by nature and only refers to things. 
  • Subject-verb agreement: Try a verb that is associated with the subject noun in the relative clause.

Unlocking the Power of Connection: 98thPercentile is here to your rescue!

The workout on relative pronouns is to enhance your power to write sentences with clarity and precision. Nevertheless, complexity is present in grammar sometimes. A beautiful essay captures the reader’s attention and evokes a range of emotions.  By skilfully combining language, structure, and content, a writer can transport the reader into a different world or make them reflect on a personal experience. Here, 98thPercentile comes to our rescue. With the assistance of our English industry instructors, our comprehensive English classes will be crafted to give you the necessary tools and skills to apply relative pronouns efficiently. You will be able to pick up the various types and their uses and become a proficient designer of well-formed sentences that should be replete with detail and texture. 

For a rewarding learning experience, make sure to enroll in the 98thPercentile classes and turn into a relative pronoun enthusiast!


Q1: Why is there an exceptionality between relative pronouns and regular pronouns?

Ans: Relative pronouns are used to connect a relative clause to a noun or pronoun in the main clause. 

Q2: Is "that" just like a relative pronoun is a definite answer to this question?

Ans: Certainly, "that" can be applied to both people and things in relative clauses. Pronouns: "Who" and "which" provide specificity in certain scenarios. 

Q3: How do I go about determining either of the relative pronouns being the subject or object of the relative clause?

Ans: The use of the relative pronoun within the relative clause will be clear to you. That is, does it express the action or does it receive the action?

Q4: what phrases describe pronouns?

Ans: Complementing clauses allow us to describe a noun or a pronoun being mentioned in the former clause. 

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