Providing Extra Information
Defining and Non-defining Relative Clauses
Relative pronouns are used to connect two clauses in order to either define or provide additional information about a subject or an object.
who - persons
which - things
where - places
when - times
that - both persons and things
whose - possessive
Defining Relative Clauses
Defining relative clauses provide information which is essential to completely understand the sentence.
This is the data which will be used in the decision tree.
That is the organization which abandoned standard lobbying techniques.
That is the stewardship project which was chosen by our CTO.
Defining relative clauses identify persons or things that otherwise would not be automatically understood.
Relative Pronouns in Defining Relative Clauses
|Person||Thing||Subject||who, that||which, that||Object||that, who, whom||that, which||Possessive||whose||whose, of which|
Non-defining Relative Clauses
Non-defining relative clauses provide information which is not essential, but adds additional information.
Student Development and Activities, which is the most popular student group on campus, is committed to helping students enhance their leadership skills."
These development-related projects, which have been structured by the WTO, will end up stalling local development."
The seed for the winter wheat, which is a vital crop in developing countries, was often eaten rather than planted."
Correct punctuation is essential in non-defining clauses. A comma is placed both before and after the non-defining clause.
Relative Pronouns in Non-Defining Relative Clauses
|Person||Thing||Subject||who||which||Object||who, whom||which||Possessive||whose||whose, of which|