‘nothing that you do’ versus ‘nothing of what you do’

Perezoso

Member
español de Madrid
Could anybody tell me something about the accuracy of 'of what' in this sentence found in Google 'Believe nothing of what you hear, and only half of what you see’ ?. I know that 'Believe nothing that you hear, and only half of what you see’, also found in Google, is correct.Thanks.
 
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  • Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Hello Perzoso,

    We get quite a few questions from Spanish people about translating the Spanish equivalent of that which. I think it needs almost always to be translated into English by what.

    Believe nothing of what you hear - is correct. It doesn't say nothing that you hear (also correct) but nothing of what (that which) you hear.

    In Nothing that you hear we have a simple relative, and there is a great debate about the choice between that and which in simple relatives. That debate is not relevant to your question.
     

    Perezoso

    Member
    español de Madrid
    Thank you, Thomas. I put that question because I was bewildered when reading in a grammar that after 'all' and 'nothing' we cannot use 'what' but 'that'. The literal translation of *'All what you say is certainly true' in Spanish is fine as well as 'Nothing of what...'; but I couldn't find any mention about 'nothing + preposition + what' .
     
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