Student or Learner
This is the telephone that/which you can get for free.
--- Are both "that" and "which" correct?
(1) An excellent book used by many ordinary people gives this simple advice: If you can drop the clause and not lose the point of the sentence, use "which." If you can't, use "that."
(2) If you drop the clause in your sentence, you get: This is the telephone.
(3) Is that the idea of your sentence? I do not think so.
(4) In other words, your clause is necessary information describing the telephone.
(5) It would be helpful, therefore, to use "that."
Have a nice day!
See the link below for an interesting article on that book and the so-called that/which rule, which, apparently, is not a rule at all. In other words, either "which" or "that" may be used to introduce a restrictive clause.
50 Years of Stupid Grammar Advice - The Chronicle Review - The Chronicle of Higher Education
Last edited by Allen165; 27-Feb-2010 at 11:45.
Does it mean that the rule: If you can drop the clause and not lose the point of the sentence, use "which." If you can't, use "that." is incorrect?
In principle, you may use either "which" or "that" to introduce a restrictive clause, although in most cases I would go with "that." However, you may use only "which" to introduce a nonrestrictive clause.
If you can drop the clause and not lose the point of the sentence, use "which." = correct
If you can't, use "that." or "which"
Last edited by Allen165; 27-Feb-2010 at 11:46.
I forgot to add that I'm not a teacher. Sorry.
Jasmin, good morning.
Thank you for your kind note.
(1) The book that I used is WOE IS I by Patricia T. O'Conner.
(2) She worked at THE NEW YORK TIMES.
(3) As I mentioned, she wrote her book for ordinary folks like me.
(4) I thank you for the link. I shall certainly TRY to read it. THE CHRONICLE is certainly too intellectual for an ordinary person such as I.
(5) I have always believed that "that" should be used for restrictive clauses.
(6) I have also heard that very many people acquainted with the history of English say that "rule" is nonsense.
(7) I shall continue, however, to use the "rule."
(8) Furthermore, since learners crave rules to give them self-confidence, I believe that learners should follow that "rule."
Thank you again for your reply -- and the link.
Have a nice day!