a relative pronoun replacing an object complement

grammar-in-use

Senior Member
Chinese
Hello everyone,

It seems that it is rare for a relative pronoun to act as a complement in the relative clauses.
Do these following sentences sound OK or odd? If odd, how would you improve on them?

a. He is a fat man, which I wouldn’t like you to be.:confused:
(Cf: a1. I wouldn't like you to be a fat man.)

b. I am not the good teacher that my parents would like to make me.:confused:
(Cf: b1. My parents would like to make me a good teacher.)

c. I don’t think it is the good investment that they consider it.:confused:
(Cf: c1. They consider it a good investment.)

d. I don’t think he is worthy of the title of a super star that the role of James Bond in the movie made him.:confused:
(Cf: d1. The role of James Bond in the movie made him a super star.)

I'd really appreciate your help in confirming these.
 
  • They are all odd; and c and d are not acceptable.

    They are unduly complicated:

    They consider it a good investment. I don't agree. :tick:

    They consider it a good investment. I don't think it is. :tick:{I personally don't think so.:tick:}

    They consider it a good investment. I don't think it's good at all.:tick:

    --
    The role of James Bond made him a superstar. I don't think he deserves that label at all.:tick:
     
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    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Thank you, Lingobingo and Bennymix!

    What about these two:
    e. ? I don't think he deserves the label as a superstar that the role of James Bond made him.:confused:
    f. ? I don't think he deserves the label as a superstar that the role of James Bond earned/won him.:confused:
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    "I don't think he deserves the 'hero' label {or status} that most people have given him.":tick:

    "I don't think he's the 'good boy' his mom thinks he is!":tick:
    In your first sentence, the relative "that" is the direct object of the verb "give".
    In your second one, the bare relative works as the subject complement, as in "I'm not a thin man that I once used to be".

    As you know, I need a relative clause in which the relative pronoun occupies the position of an object complement.
    But I find it very hard to make this type of sentence. Could you possibly create one such sentence for me?:)
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    What about these two:
    e. ? I don't think he deserves the label as a superstar that the role of James Bond made him.:confused:
    f. ? I don't think he deserves the label as a superstar that the role of James Bond earned/won him.:confused:
    Not quite either of those. But you could say:

    I don’t think he deserves the label of superstar that the role of James Bond gave him.​
     
    GIU, I think lingo's example fits your request and is not weird or unnatural. I think you can see that the transformation you want is not easy in practice to pull off--besides grammar, to make it clear and natural.

    I don't think he's the hero that the townspeople made him. (He fired a few shots at the invaders, then ran for his life.):tick:

    I don't think he deserves the attack that his silly twitter post--a race joke-- brought upon him:tick:

    Strive for clarity. Embeddings in English can, if not wrong, get rather perplexing:

    He found the rat that was half-eaten by the cat chased away by the dog he’d just bought.:tick::confused:
     
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    Here are some plausible re writes of your b.

    b. I am not the good teacher that my parents would like to make me:cross:

    b* I'm not the selfless doctor that my parents wanted me to be. {or "would have wanted"}:tick:

    b** I'm not the rabid Republican my father tried to make me into.:tick:
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    I don't think he's the hero that the townspeople made him. (He fired a few shots at the invaders, then ran for his life.):tick:
    Thank you very much for all your good examples!
    Yeah, you're right; it's really hard to pull off, but your sentence above best fits my request.:thumbsup::D

    I really appreciate your big help.:idea::idea:
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Hi Benny,
    I'm still thinking about your sentence below:
    I don't think he's the hero that the townspeople made him.
    Does "made" as used here mean "to represent somebody as being something"?
    I've just happened to see this sentence from the Oxford dictionary:

    a. He makes King Lear a truly tragic figure.


    Can I transform Sentence (a) into this:
    b. ? I don’t think King Lear is the truly tragic figure that Shakespeare makes him.:confused:

    Does Sentence (b) sound OK or natural?
    (In the case of "b", we have to change "a ...figure" to "the...figure", right?)
     
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    grassy

    Senior Member
    Polish
    a. He makes King Lear a truly tragic figure.

    Can I transform Sentence (a) into this:
    b. ? I don’t think King Lear is the truly tragic figure that Shakespeare makes him.:confused:
    Are you sure that in sentence a) "he" refers to Shakespeare and not to an actor playing King Lear?
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Are you sure that in sentence a) "he" refers to Shakespeare and not to an actor playing King Lear?
    Aha, I think you're right.:) Then how would you transform sentence (a) into a relative clause?
    What about "I don't like the tragic figure that he makes King Lear"?:confused:
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    I don’t think King Lear is the truly tragic figure that Anthony Hopkins makes him.
    Thank you!:):thumbsup: Now I'm trying to make another one:

    I don’t think it is the great honor that they consider it to be.
    (cf. They consider it a great honor.)

    Does it sound OK?
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Yes, that’s fine. Another typical way of saying it is: I don’t think that’s the great honour it’s made out to be.
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Yes, that’s fine. Another typical way of saying it is: I don’t think that’s the great honour it’s made out to be.
    Thank you! (However, that's not what I'm trying to get - to make an object complement a relativized element:)) I find it's really difficult to construct such relative clauses.

    Your example reminds me of this one:
    a. This award is considered (to be) a great honour.
    b. ?? I don't think this award is the great honour that it is considered to be.:confused:

    Does sentence (b) sound fine?
     
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    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    That’s exactly the same construction as mine, but including the optional relative pronoun. I was just giving you a more idiomatic/informal way of saying it.

    It’s made out to be a great honour / They make it out to be a great honour
    becomes (in the negative):
    It’s not the great honour it’s made out to be
    or (as a question):
    Is it the great honour it’s made out to be?
     

    grammar-in-use

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    That’s exactly the same construction as mine, but including the optional relative pronoun. I was just giving you a more idiomatic/informal way of saying it.

    It’s made out to be a great honour / They make it out to be a great honour
    becomes (in the negative):
    It’s not the great honour it’s made out to be
    or (as a question):
    Is it the great honour it’s made out to be?
    Thanks a lot! Your sentences have inspired me to write these two:

    I don’t think this award is the great honour (that) they made it out to be.
    I don’t think this award is as great an honour as they made it out to be.

    I think they should sound fine, right?
    Furthermore, they lead me to consider that there must be some structural connection between relative clauses (as in "the great honour that...") and comparative constructions (as in "as great an honour as..."), in that both "the great honour that..." and "as great an honour as..." work as the complements of the verb "be" at the sentence-end.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Yes, those are fine too.

    But I don’t see any direct connection between saying that something is not what it’s said to be and saying that it’s not as good or whatever as it’s said to be (in other words, making a comparison). That connection is only possible in your example because you’re using the adjective “great”, which also has a compaative and a superlative. Take that away and no comparison is possible as an alternative version of the same statement.
     
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