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  1. Member
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    how to use the structure "It is...... that"

    I've found some examples about the grammar structure "It is.... that" ( I don't know whether they are grammartically correct or not).

    1. It was yesterday that she was waking up every hour to nurse.
    2. it was yesterday when she came home
    3. It is she who leads my heart in wandering.
    4. So let the remnants re-organize themselves, it is they that are suffering
    I'm not sure about using the stucture "It is....that". I think it is used to emphasize the subject that does an action and it is a fixed structure, that means sentence 2 and 3 are not correct, are they?

  2. mara_ce's Avatar
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    Re: how to use the structure "It is...... that"

    Hi san2612,

    Iīve found some examples that explain the use of “that” in cleft sentences.
    Cleft sentences are emphatic sentences. They are used to give thematic and focal prominence to a particular element of a clause. Whenever a cleft sentence is used, there is a contrast implied.

    A: Would you like to borrow this book?
    B: No, itīs the other book that I want to read. [Itīs the other book, not that book, that I want to read]

    A: Are you going to buy it?
    B: Well… itīs my wife that decides. [Itīs my wife, not me, that decides]

    Itīs possible to derive four cleft sentences, each highlighting a particular element of the clause:

    Subject as focus:
    It was Sam who wore his best suit to the dance last night.

    Direct object as focus:
    It was his best suit that Sam wore to the dance last night.

    Adverbial adjunct of time as focus:
    It was last night that Sam wore his best suit to the dance.

    Adverbial adjunct of place as focus:
    It was to the dance that Sam wore his best suit.

    Your sentences # 2 and 3 are correct. Sentence #4 sounds less common in written English since most of the examples use "who" when they focus on the subject. Itīd be interesting to read other opinions.

  3. Newbie
    English Teacher
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    Re: how to use the structure "It is...... that"

    All 4 sentences are fine. They are relative pronouns so "that" can replace "who" :)

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