Relative pronoun


Today, one of my students came to me and asked a question about a relative pronoun.

The question was..

The girl was my classmate. + I met her at the store.=?


I showed her two answers.

1. The girl whom I met at the store was my classmate.

2. I met the girl, who was my classmate, at the store.


Explaining the answers, I came up with some questions.


Here come the questions.

Q1) Answer 2 is grammatically wrong?

Q2) What if the question was 'I met the girl at the store + She was my classmate=?'

Q3) If Answer 2 is right, can I omit two commas in the sentence? like this, I met the girl who was my classmate at the store.

Even though there were no commas in the sentence, I think no one will confuse it, because the word 'classmate' means a friend in class... Am I right?

edited Nov 05 '12 at 09:50 Dean New member

Dean, I'm replying to your comment below. If you make q2 complex sentence with the dependent clause at the end, you will have to add a relative pronoun (who). It's position in the sentence would then be closest to the noun 'store', and this would be confusing. Your example 2, 'I met the girl, who was my classmate, at the store.' is the best choice for a complex sentence.

Lewis NeidhardtNov 09 '12 at 15:00

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1 answer


q1 and q3

I think  answer 2 is correct. 'Who was my classmate' is an appositive, and not being necessary to the sentence, should be set off with commas. It's not necessary because, though it tells a bit about the girl, doesn't define the girl you met.



As I read this question, you're making a compound sentence.

I met the girl at the store, and she was my classmate.

link answered Nov 02 '12 at 21:14 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow

Thanks for your answer. but the second answer you wrote, I want to make not a compound sentence but complex one. than what could be the answer?

DeanNov 04 '12 at 18:51

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