IELTS| Clauses: What is a Clause? How to Identify Clauses, Types Of Clauses, And Examples

 

IELTS| Clauses: What is a Clause? How to Identify Clauses, Types Of Clauses, And Examples
IELTS| Clauses: What is a Clause? How to Identify Clauses, Types Of Clauses, And Examples

 

How to identify clauses and the different types of clauses

 

Hello friends! It’s really been a while… been quite busy with job and other things of life, you know what I mean…wink!

Okay! Welcome to my blog for another exciting topic. Today we have something very different from the others. I’m really sorry for the break, hope we’re still together in this?

Today’s topic promises to be exciting as others. Before I start, I will really like to appreciate you all for your time, feed backs and subscription… it really means a lot to mean. It boots my zeal and a’m very grateful for that.

Okay! Let’s get started. Our topic today is on clauses… new, right? Yes! I trust we’ve all visited my other posts HERE to update our knowledge on the other topics because we’ll really need it a lot for this one.

If that’s the case… lets ride on

What is a clause?

What are the types of clauses?

How do we identify them?

WHAT IS A CLAUSE?

Clauses are groups of words consisting of a subject and a verb. They are also said to be group of words that contain a subject and its own predicate and has a complete meaning on its own.

A clause can be a complete sentence or a part of a sentence.

Example of a clause with a complete sentence

A sentence can have one clause or more than one clause.

Example

TYPES OF CLAUSES

There are two types of clauses

  1. Dependent clauses
  2. Independent clauses

Independent Clauses

These are known as the main clause. They make sense on their own. They do not need another clause/ more information to make a complete sense.

Example

Writing is an interesting hobby though it requires a lot of time and hard work

Dependent Clauses

These are known as subordinate clauses. They need independent clause/more information to make a complete sentence. They do not make a complete thought on their own.

A dependent clause starts with subordinating conjunctions such as: unless, whenever, because, until, after, while, since, if, while, when, although, where, even though, even if, wherever, whereas, why, while and subordinating clauses.

Two or more independent clauses can be joined together by these subordinating conjunctions.

Subordinate clauses

A subordinate clause has a subject and a verb but, unlike an independent clause, cannot make a complete meaning on its own. It depends on another clause to make a complete meaning. This is why it is called a dependent clause. Some subordinate clauses are introduced by relative pronouns such as who, which, what, whom, that, whose etc and some by subordinating conjunctions such as although, whatever, whichever, whenever, since, until etc. subordinating clauses function in sentences as adverbs, adjectives and nouns

Relative clauses

A relative clause begins with a relative pronoun and functions as an adjective. The relative pronoun in a relative clause is sometimes the subject of the clause and sometimes the object.

Example

Though it requires a lot of time and hard work

Example of independent and dependent clauses together in a sentence

Writing is an interesting hobby though it requires a lot time and hard work

↓                                                                                   ↓

Independent clause                                     dependent clause

Let’s look at more examples of independent clauses

  1. I feel happy
  2. You have to dream big
  3. I’ll never fail my exams
  4. Rose just left the room
  5. Jugging is a good exercise
  6. She runs home after work
  7. Rose ate the food
  8. Rice is a popular food
  9. Cynthia carried the bag
  10. Read for your exam

Let’s look at more examples of dependent clauses

  1. When I help people
  2. So she won’t be late
  3. Whoever knows her
  4. If I hear you sing again
  5. Whatever makes you happy
  6. That made her cry
  7. Though they are poor
  8. Since I won’t be there
  9. Who knows the girl
  10. Although he was sick

Types of Dependent Clauses

  1. Noun clause
  2. Adjective clause
  3. Adverb clause

Noun clause

These are group of words with subject and verb combination. A noun clause is a dependent clause that acts as a noun. They begin with words such as that, how, when, which, whichever, whatever, who, whom, whoever, where, whether, whomever, why. They also act as subjects, direct objects, indirect objects, predicates etc.

Whoever typed the letter should delete it

From the sentence

Should delete it is a dependent clause

Whoever is a subordinate conjunction introducing the noun clause typed the letter thereby making “whoever typed the letter” a dependent noun clause

Example

  1. That you’re here now makes me glad
  2. I fear that the food will not thirst good
  3. You can do whatever makes you happy
  4. You can marry whoever pleases you
  5. She might fail since she didn’t study well
  6. That Rose gave Peter money makes him happy
  7. The children loves it whenever Sandra cooks for them
  8. That your articles are educating makes me recommend it to my students
  9. Since her eyes were bad she had to get a glasses
  10. Pursue whatever makes you happy

Adjective clause

These are group of words that are used to qualify a noun. Adjective clause unlike adjectives which comes before the noun they qualify usually come after the noun it qualifies and must have a subject and verb combination. They act as an adjective (describes noun). An adjective clause is also called a relative clause.

Example

  1. The house which has a thatched roof is theirs
  2. The food which she cooked is very delicious
  3. My uncle married a woman who has a broken leg
  4. My sister is a teacher who teaches in one of the small schools in town
  5. Rose is a writer who writes short stories
  6. She carried a bag that has a big hole in it
  7. The teacher loves the student who is very intelligent and hardworking in his class
  8. She went for the wedding that was strictly on invitation
  9. Follow that girl that has a long hair
  10. My brother love girls that are fat and lovely

The Components of an Adjective Clause

An adjective clause must have the following below:

  1. It will begin with a relative pronoun such as whose, that, who, which, whom or a relative adverb such as why, when where… this identifies the noun it is qualifying.
  2. It will have a subject and verb. This makes it a clause
  3. It must say something about the noun. This is why it is an adjective

Take a look at these adjective clauses with a relative pronoun

Example

From the sentence

  1. The chair that John broke yesterday has been repaired

That is the relative pronoun

John is the subject

Broke is the verb

That john broke yesterday provides information about the noun the chair

  1. The boy whom she slapped has gone

From the sentence

Who is the relative pronoun

She is the subject

Slapped is the verb

Whom she slapped has gone provides information about the noun the boy

*The relative pronoun is often times the subject of the clause

Note: In most cases, the relative pronouns can be omitted but then a subordinate conjunction will be used

Example

  1. The chair that John broke yesterday has been repaired
  2. The boy whom she slapped has gone

Adverb clause

These are group of words that are used to modify or qualify the meaning of an adjective, a verb, a clause another adverb or any other type of word. An adverb clause must have subject and verb combination. Adverb clause must contain subordinate conjunctions which prevents them from making a complete sense. They act as an adverb, answering questions like how? Where? When? Why? Under what condition?  to what extent?.

Let’s look at some examples and you will see how adverbs work by providing interesting information about the time, place, and frequency

Example

Kate pounded the yam until her arms ached.

From the above sentence:

Kate pounded the yam is an independent clause

Until is a subordinate conjunction introducing the adverb clause her arms ached

The adverb clause from this sentence now is until her arms ached

Let’s look at more examples…

  1. Everybody had slept when they came in very late at night
  2. When it rained heavily at night the school building collapsed
  3. Don’t stop unless you are very tired
  4. My laptop was bad that I couldn’t type very fast
  5. The food couldn’t digest since she hungrily ate at night
  6. He was comfortable though he trekked a far distance
  7. She runs home whenever she closes late from work
  8. Whoever prepares very well for the exam will pass
  9. That she walked late at night made her fall
  10. My house is close so I didn’t drive fast

The native speakers of English are very good at using these clauses without difficulty. In ielts, you’re taught these clauses to speak like the native speakers.

This will help improve your vocabulary and also increase your band score.

Why Should I Bother With Clauses?

There are so many reasons you should familiarize yourself with the use of clauses

  1. To understand when to use commas in an adjective clause

Example

Take a good look at these two sentences

A girl who went to my school won the competition

 

Rose Walters, who went to my school, won the competition

From the first sentence

When an adjective clause is needed to identify its noun “girl” then a comma is not used

From the second sentence

When an adjective clause is an additional information, then a comma is used

Let’s see more examples of this

You studied at night so you could pass the exam

Here, there’s no comma because the clause is needed to identify the “night”

(A clause that’s necessary for identification is called a restrictive adjective clause)

You studied well at night, so you could pass the exams

Here, there’s a comma because the “night” has already been identified as “well”. The clause is just additional information

(A clause that’s just additional information is called a non-restrictive adjective clause)

  1. To understand when to use comma in an adverb clause

Example

The adverbial clauses in these two sentences are identical but one is with a comma and the other is without.

Unless you are very tired, don’t stop

 

Don’t stop unless you are very tired

When you have your adverbial clause in front a sentence, it is advisable to use a comma afterwards. When it is at the back, you can omit the comma.

NOTE: This works for adverb clauses that are adverbs of time

What’s the difference between which and that?

These two words can be used interchangeably

Let’s take a good look at this

When ‘which’ begins a restrictive adjective clause, you can replace it with ‘that’. Some countries like America will prefer you use ‘that’ to ‘which’ for a restrictive adjective clause.

Example

  1. The boy whom she slapped has gone (but some countries like America will not approve of this because the prefer that to which without a comma)
  2. The boy that she slapped has gone (This is widely accepted and by Americans)

 

Wow! It has been a great lecture… right? I trust you all understood this very well. You can refer back to my other posts especially on nouns, pronounsadjectives and adverbs for a better understanding of this topic. There I explained it all well and that can serve as a foundation for this.

Alright! All learn and no revision makes jack a dull boy as it is commonly said,  practice makes perfect!… So let’s do some practice for a perfect understanding. Let’s go there!

Questions

Identify the noun clauses in these sentences

  1. What Rose loves most about cooking

What Rose loves most about cooking

  1. Eat whatever you see in the kitchen

Eat whatever you see in the kitchen

  1. She doesn’t like what you gave her

She doesn’t like what you gave her

  1. Don’t follow me unless you wear the dress

Don’t follow me unless you wear the dress

  1. She followed the boy who slapped her

She followed the boy who slapped her

  1. She sent me a message that reminded me

She sent me a message that reminded me

  1. Wear the dress which I bought for you

Wear the dress which I bought for you

  1. Close the pot that is in the kitchen

Close the pot that is in the kitchen

  1. Give the food to whoever comes here

Give the food to whoever comes here

  1. The person whom my heart beats for is the girl

The person whom my heart beats for is the girl

Identify the adjective clauses in these sentences

  1. The boy that ran fast is here

The boy that ran fast is here

  1. See the girl whose father built a small portable house for

See the girl whose father built a small portable house for

  1. That my school is the smallest in our community makes me sad

That my school is the smallest in our community makes me sad

  1. Whoever comes to the big house will eat the food

Whoever comes to the big house will eat the food

  1. Whatever makes her very happy must be good

Whatever makes her very happy must be good

  1. Wherever the fat girl is there’s food

Wherever the fat girl is there’s food

  1. There’s been peace since you bought the big bag

There’s been peace since you bought the big bag

  1. Unless I see the dark girl, I won’t rest

Unless I see the dark girl, I won’t rest

  1. Please call the boy who is crying

Please call the boy who is crying

  1. What makes me happy is that the sun sets in the east

What makes me happy is that the sun sets in the east

Identify the adverb clause in these sentences

  1. That I have to prepare very well for my exam makes me scared

That I have to prepare very well for my exam makes me scared

  1. Whoever came here earlier ate the food

Whoever came here earlier ate the food

  1. She kicked the fragile pot that it broke immediately

She kicked the fragile pot that it broke immediately

  1. Unless she runs very fast, she won’t catch the bus

Unless she runs very fast, she won’t catch the bus

  1. I will buy the dress when you pass very well

I will buy the dress when you pass very well

  1. See the girl who slapped the boy really hard

See the girl who slapped the boy really hard

  1. She brings whatever she likes here

She brings whatever she likes here

  1. That the message reached her quick makes me happy

That the message reached her quick makes me happy

  1. Let’s see when the most recent message will come

Let’s see when the most recent message will come

  1. I kicked the girl that she cried badly

I kicked the girl that she cried badly

Okay! Now practice this on your own

  1. What’s a clause
  2. Types of clauses
  3. Explain number 2 above
  4. Give examples of each type of clause

Good luck!!!

Write well in your ielts

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