- For Teachers
Are these sentences correct:
1-We had a blueprint for the machine which it was our goal to build.
2-We had a blueprint for the machine it was our goal to build.
We had a blueprint for the machine that was our goal to build.
Somehow, the phrase "our goal to build" does not connect very well with the rest of the sentence in each of these examples. I'll, therefore, offer a rewrite for two of your example sentences.
We had a blueprint for the machine that we wanted to build.
[We had a blueprint for the machine. We wanted to build it.]
It was our goal to build the machine, for which we had a blueprint.
[It was our goal to build the machine. We had a blueprint for it.]
I would take note of these points: It would only be logical that one would have a blueprint for a machine that one wanted to build. There seems to be some confusion here. Logically, the goal should be "building the machine", not the machine itself. Although we would not understand this to be the case, to me, the sentence seems to say that the "machine" is the goal, which is not logical because a goal should involve action of some sort. I would say that producing correct and well-formed complex sentences is not a simple matter of structure, but has much to do with the logical and orderly combining of ideas.
Please, post follow-up questions if you have any.
Last edited by PROESL; 26-Jul-2009 at 07:07. Reason: I changed "each of" to "two of".
Thanks Raymott and PROESL,
I thought in the first two, the goal was 'to build the machine'.
(the machine it was our goal to build= it was our goal to build that machine.)
I think only in the third one, the machine seems to be the goal.
A-We had a map to reach the summit that was our goal to attain.
The summit was our goal to attain.
The goal to attain=the summit
B-We had a map to reach the summit it was our goal to attain.
It was our goal to attain a summit and we had a map to reach it.
To attain the summit was our goal.
As for sentence B, I would first punctuate it correctly, make one modification, and then combine both sentences into one.
We had a map to reach the summit. It was our goal to reach it. (We understand "it" to refer to the summit.)
We had a map to reach the summit, which was our goal.
Though one does understand what you mean here, it comes across, at least to me, as rather illogical to use "attain" because it makes it seem that "attaining the summit" was the goal, while "reaching the summit" was the goal. So I would sum it up by saying one can attain a goal (the goal of reaching a summit), but not attain a summit. One can, however, reach a summit.