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    #1

    Relative Clause

    Dear Teacher,

    Please help me analyzing the following complex sentence.

    a/ My brother gave me two books. One of the books is interesting.

    ==>1/ My brother gave me two books, one of which is interesting.
    ==>2/ One of the two books which my brother gave me is interesting.

    Which of the above sentences-1 or 2- is the combined sentence of the two sentences in a?

    Thanks in advance.

    Best wishes.

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    #2

    Re: Relative Clause

    They both work, but the first reads better to me.

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    #3

    Re: Relative Clause

    Teacher Tdol,

    One of the two assignments that my teacher gave me is interesting.

    Does "that my teacher gave me" modify either "the two assignments" or "one"?

    Thanks

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    #4

    Re: Relative Clause

    Quote Originally Posted by nagara View Post
    Teacher Tdol,

    One of the two assignments that my teacher gave me is interesting.

    Does "that my teacher gave me" modify either "the two assignments" or "one"?

    Thanks
    The relative pronoun can only see the nearest noun phrase head. It cannot see the NP structure, just the head.

    There are two nouns before "which":

    1. assignments (plural),
    2. one (singular).

    Which is the head? Let us test for number concord! Normally the verb agrees in number with the head of the noun phrase.

    One of the two assignments is
    One of the two assignments are

    The verb agrees with "one" so "one" is the head and "one" is the noun the relative pronoun refers back to.

    One of the two assignments that my teacher gave me
    is interesting.

    The part in bold is the subject, a noun phrase. "One" is the head, the rest is the modifiers. "of the two assignments" is a prepositional postmodifier and "that my teacher gave me" is a relative postmodifier.

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    #5

    Re: Relative Clause

    Quote Originally Posted by Afit View Post
    The verb agrees with "one" so "one" is the head and "one" is the noun the relative pronoun refers back to.
    I disagree.

    'One' is the subject of the verb 'is', but that is not relevant to the relative clause.

    One of the [two assignments that my teacher gave me] is interesting.

    My teacher gave me two assignments. One of these two assignments (which/that my teacher gave me) is interesting. The antecedent of the relative is '(the two) assignments'.

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    #6

    Re: Relative Clause

    [One of the two assigmnents] that my teacher gave me is interesting.

    He gave me two assignments. One of them is interesting: the one that my teacher gave me. The other one that my brother gave me is disappointingly ho-hum.

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    #7

    Re: Relative Clause

    Quote Originally Posted by Afit View Post
    [One of the two assigmnents] that my teacher gave me is interesting.

    He gave me two assignments. One of them is interesting: the one that my teacher gave me. The other one that my brother gave me is disappointingly ho-hum.
    Who is 'He'? 'He' seems to have given me assignments that my teacher and my brother gave me.

    Sorry, Afit, you are just not right here.

    One of the two assignments that are on my desk is good.
    One of thetwo assignments that my teacher gave me is interesting.

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    #8

    Re: Relative Clause

    Quote Originally Posted by Afit View Post
    The relative pronoun can only see the nearest noun phrase head. It cannot see the NP structure, just the head.
    The question is: Is "One of the two assignments" a matryoshka doll or not?

    1. [One of] [the two assignments] that --> one of = phrasal determiner?
    or
    2. [One of the two assignments] that
    or
    3. [[One] of [the two assignments]] that

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    #9

    Re: Relative Clause

    No, it's as 5jj says.

    There is really almost no possibility of a native speaker interpreting it any other way.

    The teacher gave two assignments. One is interesting.
    One [of the two assignments that my teacher gave me] is interesting.

    I have two assignments. The one from my teacher is interesting. The other is from someone else and is not.
    One of the two assignments, the one from my teacher, is interesting. -- You would need to use an appositive, or some other structure, to say this.

    Edit: Sorry, as I was writing this, the conversation continued.
    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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    #10

    Re: Relative Clause

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post

    One of the two assignments that are on my desk is good.

    [One (assignment) (of [the two assigments])] that is on my desk is good; one (assignment) that is on my desk

    II would never use "are" here.

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