Agustín, que/quien es muy aficionado... (relative clauses)

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by axme100, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. axme100 Member


    I am having some trouble with Spanish relative clauses. I have some examples of exercises I attempted in a grammar book. I would really appreciate it if someone could help me understand why I got the following exercises wrong. Please be technical in your explanations. Thank you so much!

    Agustín, que/quien es muy aficionado al cine, nos recomendó que viéramos esta película.

    In this case you can’t use “quien”. Why not? Is this purely stylistic?

    ...2. A mi madre le alegró ver a Roberto, el que, había estado en casa antes.

    In this case just “que” or “quien” are acceptable answers. I don´t understand when you can use ¨El que¨ and related forms.

    3. Los invitados, a los que/a quienes entre ellos estaba, brindamos por los novios.

    “entre los que yo estaba” would be correct. In this example you CAN use ¨los que¨
    Thank you
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 21, 2013
  2. Cenzontle

    Cenzontle Senior Member

    English, U.S.
    The fact that it's in a nonrestrictive relative clause (thus between commas) means that you can use either "que" or "quien".
    Where you cannot use "quien" and have to use "que" is in a restrictive relative clause (no commas).
    So in the movie title "El hombre que sabía demasiado" ("The Man Who Knew Too Much"), "quien" would be wrong.
    A New Reference Grammar of Modern Spanish (John Butt & Carmen Benjamin), Sec. 35.3, says:
    Note that saying "quien" is only for human beings is not the same as saying human beings can only be represented by "quien".
  3. micafe

    micafe Senior Member

    United States
    Spanish - Colombia
    Who said you can't use it? Of course you can!. You can use both "quien" and "que".

    "Gloria, quien/que es una gran deportista, se ganó la medalla de oro"

    EDIT: Cenzontle's explanation is very good. :)

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