Cosa sono le frasi nominali (Noun clause)

Leggi le frasi seguenti:

  • She told me a story.
  • She told me that I had won a prize.

In sentence 1, the object of told is story which is a noun.

In sentence 2, the object of told is the group of words ‘that I had won a prize’ which is a clause that does the work of a noun. Hence it is called a noun clause.

A noun clause is a group of words which has a subject and predicate of its own. A noun clause does the work of a noun.

More examples are given below:

  • He asked me where I was going.
  • It is certain that he will win.
  • Whether he will come is doubtful.

Notes:

A noun clause can be introduced by the conjunction that.

  • He says that he is ill.
  • It is certain that he will come.
  • She said that she was coming.

That is often left out especially in an informal style.

  • She said she wanted to go. OR She said that she wanted to go.

A noun clause can be introduced by a relative pronoun, provided that no antecedent is present.

  • I don’t understand what he says.
  • I want to know who he is.

A noun clause can be introduced by an interrogative or relative adverb, provided that no antecedent is present.

  • I don’t know where she has disappeared.
  • I want to know when he will return.

A noun clause can be introduced by the conjunctions if and whether.

  • I don’t know if I am right.
  • He asked whether the servant had polished his shoes.
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