Reduced relative clauses

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Besta119, May 11, 2010.

  1. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    Hello

    I am having trouble in dealing with the so called reduced relative clauses. I was told in class that they are always non-finite clauses and they are form by participle of clauses. I am ok of forming them if there are two different sentences; but if there is only one sentence I don't know how to do it.

    Like this one: Kevin lives in a brick house. If I am to put the underlined passage into a reduced relative clause, the best I can come up with is: The house Kevin lives in is brick; but the problem is I know it is wrong, because the verb is finite.

    Does anyone has a better suggestion?

    Thanks
     
  2. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Hi Besta - welcome to the forums:)

    The problem is that it really doesn't makes sense to turn a single clause/ sentence into a reduced relative clause, because what you end up with is half a sentence that leaves you hanging in mid-air....

    But since you've been asked to do it (!), I would say the easiest way is to imagine there is a second clause to link it to. In your case, let's try Kevin lives in a brick house. Kevin isn't worried by noisy neighbours.

    This would become Living in a brick house, Kevin isn't worried by noisy neighbours.

    You might want to check with your teachers, but I'd say the answer required is
    Living in a brick house....

    Good luck!
     
  3. ptetpe Member

    Mandarin
    How about:
    The house (for Kevin) to live in is made of brick. ?
     
  4. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    Hi Loob,

    So your suggestion would be: The house Keving living in is brick? Is this a grammatical sentence? for me it seems ok, but I am not a native speaker, so I can't tell.
     
  5. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    Hi ptetpe,

    I think in the sentence you suggested, the verb to live is not a participle. It is in infinitive. I was told that reduced relative clauses are always participles.

    Thanks for your comment
     
  6. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    No, my suggestion - see the last part of my post - is:

    Living in a brick house....

    which is not a complete sentence. But then a reduced relative clause is not a complete sentence.
     
  7. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    yes, but I was asked to put it not as an incomplete sentence...this is reason of my headache...
     
  8. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Can you please tell us the exact instructions, Besta?
     
  9. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    These are the instructions

    Kevin lives in a brick house.Rewrite the sentence with the underlined passage as reduced relative clause
    : To rewrite the sentence according to the directions, you need to make the matrix clause a copula ascriptive clause.)
     
  10. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    The house Kevin lives in is brick.
    It is not entirely clear to me what Besta's teachers are asking for, but
    - this sentence is perfectly good English (though some people might feel uncomfortable with the predicative use of the noun modifier brick);
    - the words Kevin and lives are in a relative clause. It is reduced if "reduced" means lacking a relative pronoun.
    I think that by definition all relative clauses contain a finite verb.
     
  11. Hermione Golightly

    Hermione Golightly Senior Member

    London
    British English
    :eek:
    HG
     
  12. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    To be honest, I think there's something wrong with the question.

    I take "copula ascriptive clause" to mean "clause with to be + adjective modifier". So the answer being looked for is something like "Living in a brick house, Kevin is happy".

    But that doesn't flow from the question, because there's no mention of "happy" or any other adjective.

    I suggest you query the question with your teachers.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2010
  13. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    yeah, I asked him already and he said it should be pretty straightforward. However, this question seems to be everyone's headache...so it is not that straightforward...
     
  14. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Ah - further thought:idea::idea:

    The house lived in by Kevin is brick.

    I think that's it!:D
     
  15. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    oh!!! yeah, so let's see. The house is brick=copular ascriptive. Lived in by Kevin = lived is a participle. Live in by Kevin = non-finite.'

    Omg I think this is it!!

    You are great!

    Now if that is the case, which is better? The house living in by Kevin is brick. or The house lived in by Kevin is brick.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 12, 2010
  16. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    The house living in by Kevin is brick. :cross: (this is not grammatical)
    The house lived in by Kevin is brick. :tick: (this is grammatical)
     
  17. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    OK! Thank you so much for your help. It means a lot to me! Thank you!!!
     
  18. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    Ok, I was told by my teacher that reduced relative are always participle non-finites, but I think he might have to read this. Thank you.

    However, in your suggested sentence which is "The house (for Kevin) to live in is made of brick." the words (for Kevin) should be able to be deleted if it was a reduced relative, but if they are omitted, the sentence will become ungrammatical: * The house to live in is made of brick.

    Thank you
     
  19. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    This is not the definition of "reduced relative clause" that appears in the Wikipedia article on "reduced relative clause".
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reduced_relative_clause
    In Wikipedia's definition, relative clauses have (or at least can have) finite verbs. "Reduced" means that they don't have a relative pronoun.
     
  20. Cagey post mod (English Only / Latin)

    California
    English - US
    There seem to be two (at least) meanings for "reduced relative clause". The Wiki article se16teddy links to would call the following a reduced relative clause:
    This is the car I want.
    (compare: This is the car that I want)
    because of the omitted that.

    The Internet Grammar of English we link to in our resources uses that sentence as an example of a zero relative clause.

    They offer this explanation of a reduced relative clause:
    This is a type of relative clause which lacks a relative adverb or pronoun. For example, the book written by you and the man following us both contain reduced relatives. The full relative equivalents are: the book which was written by you, and the man who is following us. Unlike zero relative clauses, reduced relatives contain nonfinite verbs.
    This second definition of reduced relative clause seems to be the one Besta119 has been taught.

    Looking around the web, I found this example of a reduced relative clause using an infinitival phrase instead of a participial phrase:
    The first man who arrived was Wilson.
    The first man to arrive was Wilson.
    [from: Using English.com]
    However, participial phrases are much more common. Some people call these participial relative clauses rather than reduced relative clauses.

    Note: I find the Internet Grammar of English's Glossary of Terms a helpful reference for the terminology used in this type of analysis. They also have fuller explanations in the body of the website.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  21. Besta119 Member

    Malay
    Thank you all for your contribution, means a lot to me. Thank you!
     

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