what kind of excursion <it> will be

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Nesa_nesa234

Senior Member
Spanish
You have to tell me what kind of excursion will be.
You have to tell me what kind of excursion it will be.

I think it is the first option what kind of excursion will be,because the subject of the verb "will be" is excursion,am I wrong?
I saw the second option as well but I dont think it is correct.
 
  • The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    If you're already talking about a specific excursion, the second one is correct (with "it"). If you aren't, you could say something like "You have to tell me what kind of excursion will take place."
     

    Nesa_nesa234

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    If you're already talking about a specific excursion, the second one is correct (with "it"). If you aren't, you could say something like "You have to tell me what kind of excursion will take place."
    But what i dont understand is the use of "it". I mean,isn't "what kind of excursions" functioning as a subject there?.
    Because in the sentence "you didn't tell me what was going to happen" there is no need to put an it after what because what itself functions as the subject of the verb "was". I don't know if I made myself clear
     

    The Newt

    Senior Member
    English - US
    But what i dont understand is the use of "it". I mean,isn't "what kind of excursions" functioning as a subject there?.
    Because in the sentence "you didn't tell me what was going to happen" there is no need to put an it after what because what itself functions as the subject of the verb "was". I don't know if I made myself clear
    The "it" refers to some previous mention of the excursion. For example:

    You're going to take an excursion. You have to tell me what kind of excursion it will be.

    "It" is simply a way of avoiding repeating "the excursion." In Spanish (this isn't a translation forum, but I think we can briefly mention the grammar) you don't always have to include the subject pronouns, because the form of the verb tells you who the subject is, but in English it's mandatory.

    "You have to tell me what kind of excursion will be" wouldn't make sense to us, because we don't know what the subject of "will be" is.
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    But what i dont understand is the use of "it". I mean,isn't "what kind of excursions" functioning as a subject there?.
    No, it is the subject complement. With "to be", you need both a subject and a subject complement (there are exceptions, but these are rarely encountered in ordinary English). I suppose, that since "what kind of excursions" functions as a noun, that it could be the subject of "to be", but what, then, is the complement? What kind of excursions will be what?

    "What kind of excursion it will be" is an indirect question, which is, as usual, a noun clause. It might be useful to think what the equivalent direct question would have to be. Here, there are two obvious possibilities:
    It will be what kind of excursion? [This is a statement expressed as a question]​
    What kind of excursion will it be? [This is an ordinary question with subject-verb inversion]​
    As you can see, both of these contain "it" as a dummy subject, referring to the excursion.

    How do you think a direct question could be phrased without it?
    What kind of excursion will be? :cross:
    I don't know if this makes it any clearer.

    Of course, if you could find an ordinary intransitive verb instead of "to be", this would be fine. I cannot think of a particularly suitable verb, but you could make a plausible (although very unnatural) sentence with "exist", "happen" or "occur" ("What kind of excursion will happen?", for example). But you cannot do this with "to be".
     
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