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  1. Newbie
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    • Join Date: Aug 2010
    • Posts: 1
    #1

    Question Clause lead by "How" can be treated as noun?

    Hi all,


    I've long been confused with the clause starting with "how". Is it a noun clause? Need someone to help me with this!

    I suppose it is adverbial clause but some say it's noun clause.
    Treating it as adverbial clause does sounds reasonable, it tells HOW you do it rather than WHAT you do.

    For example:
    I want to know how you did it.
    Can anyone confirm to me that the above usage is perfectly acceptable in written English?

    And if the above sentence is legal, how about this one?
    I want to know how to get it.
    Can we treat "how to..." as a noun as well? What grammar term can the above "how to" refer to?

    Thanks!

  2. chester_100's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Persian
      • Home Country:
      • Iran
      • Current Location:
      • Iran

    • Join Date: Jan 2008
    • Posts: 463
    #2

    Smile Re: Clause lead by "How" can be treated as noun?

    Sure; that's a noun clause.

    1-
    -Sentence = you can solve the problem
    -Noun clause ---->Introductory conjunction + Sentence = how + you can solve the problem
    -I know + [how + [you can solve the problem]]
    So in the above sentence the noun clause is the object of the verb know.

    2-
    Similarly how + to + verb is acceptable too.

    -Noun clause ----> Introductory conjunction + Infinitive = how + to solve the problem

    -I know how to solve the problem.

  3. Barb_D's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2007
    • Posts: 19,218
    #3

    Re: Clause lead by "How" can be treated as noun?

    Consider it a short way of saying "The process by which you did X."

    Those sentences are okay as-is.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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