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Thread: Cleft sentences

  1. Newbie
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    #1

    Question Cleft sentences

    Hello everyone!

    I have to write a seminar paper and my research topic is Cleft sentences in English. I have some troubles with the following sentences. Please, are these sentences cleft sentences?


    (1) Its not like I had a backup rocket to finish the job.
    (2) And the best thing is those idiots have no idea were watching them.
    (3) Its strange seeing root like that.

    Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

  2. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #2

    Re: Cleft sentences

    What do you think? You've researched the topic. Please give your ideas first.

  3. Newbie
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    #3

    Re: Cleft sentences

    Well, I found that a cleft sentence can be constructed in English as follows: it+ conjugated form of to be+ X (usually a noun phrase)+ subordinate clause. In other words, it has always two parts, each with its own verb.

    (3) Its strange seeing root like that. = YES
    it+is+strange+ seeing root like that (subordinate -ing clause which function as adjectival complementation)

    (2) And the best thing is (that) those idiots have no idea were watching them. = YES
    there is no empty element it but normal subject+is+ that those idiots have no idea were watching them (nominal that-clause that function as subject complement)

    (1) Its not like I had a backup rocket to finish the job. = NO
    there is not any subordinate clause in this sentence




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