Prepositions in phrasal verbs

halbert

Member
Mandarin Chinese, Shanghai Dialect
In attributive clauses, prepositions can be put either after a verb or before the relative pronoun. But when we come to phrasal verbs, the preposition can only be after the verb.
For example,
The TV that you turned on is mine.(√)
We can't say:
The TV on that you turned is mine. (X)

Here is my questions:
Are they grammatically correct?
1. The radio to which we listened is mine.
1. Those lovely children at whom we are looking are hers.Can these prepositions be put before relative pronouns?
 
  • Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    Yes, when they are not part of a phrasal verb, prepositions can be put before relative pronouns.
    The examples you give are grammatically correct, though they may sound too formal for ordinary conversation.

    Ordinarily we would say:

    The radio we listened to is mine.
    Those lovely children we are looking at are hers.
     

    halbert

    Member
    Mandarin Chinese, Shanghai Dialect
    Thank you. Grammar books indicate that prepositions going ahead of relative pronouns is a formal way of expression while tagging along behind verbs is informal and oral.
    However, my book says "listen to" and "look at" are both phrasal verbs... and whenever we come to phrasal verbs the prepositions can not be torn apart from verbs.(I post a thread of phrasal verbs question somewhere else.)

    Then I have a futher question. The following two patterns in bold are also regarded phrasal verbs -- "be proud of" and "pay attention to" Are these two grammartically correct then?
    The girl of whom we are proud is his daughter.
    The situation to which we pay attention is so serious.


    Yes, when they are not part of a phrasal verb, prepositions can be put before relative pronouns.
    The examples you give are grammatically correct, though they may sound too formal for ordinary conversation.

    Ordinarily we would say:

    The radio we listened to is mine.
    Those lovely children we are looking at are hers.
     
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