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    • Join Date: Oct 2008
    • Posts: 1
    #1

    What - That

    Hi, I would like to know when i have to use what or that. thank

  1. whitemoon's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Burmese
      • Home Country:
      • Myanmar
      • Current Location:
      • Myanmar

    • Join Date: Aug 2006
    • Posts: 609
    #2

    Re: What - That

    What do you mean?
    What is your name?(question word)
    What I want to know is what your name is.(relative pronoun)
    Something that I want to know is what your name is.(relative pronoun)
    I don't know what to do.(relative pronoun)
    The apple that I ate yesterday is very sweet.(relative pronoun)
    I think that you are wrong.(subordinate conjunction)
    That you say so surprises me.(subordinate conjunction)
    An apple that is on the table is mine.(relative pronoun)


    • Join Date: Feb 2008
    • Posts: 484
    #3

    Re: What - That

    Quote Originally Posted by whitemoon View Post

    What I want to know is what your name is.(relative pronoun)
    Something that I want to know is what your name is.(relative pronoun)
    I don't know what to do.(relative pronoun)
    is mine.(relative pronoun)
    What I want to know is what your name is.
    Something that I want to know is what your name is.
    I don't know what to do.

    It doesn’t change matters much but in fact the whats in bold above are not relative pronouns, they are interrogative pronouns in what are (misleadingly called, I know, but nevertheless) indirect interrogative clauses*. Plenty of people think they are relatives, including teachers and even education authorities like school inspectors so you were in good company.


    *QUIRK et al, “A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language” (1992), p. 1051.
    *MALAN, N., La proposition relative en anglais contemporain. Une approche pragmatique. Gap/Paris, Ophrys, 1999, pp. 28-29.


  2. whitemoon's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Burmese
      • Home Country:
      • Myanmar
      • Current Location:
      • Myanmar

    • Join Date: Aug 2006
    • Posts: 609
    #4

    Re: What - That

    Thank you very much.
    What is your name?(interrogative pronoun)
    I want to know what your name is.(interrogative pronoun)
    I get it.
    I appreciate.

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