Adverbial Clauses and Phrases - Examples

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Adverbial Clauses and Phrases
For example:
* They will visit you before they go to the airport.
Adverbial clauses can also be placed before the main clause without changing the meaning. For example:
* Before they go to the airport, they will visit you.
!Note - When an adverb clause introduces the sentence (as this one does), it is set off with a comma. Adverb clauses answer questions like "when?", "where?", "why?" For example:
* I went to the show that was very popular.
This kind of clause is used to provide extra information about the noun it follows. This can be to define something (a defining clause), or provide unnecessary, but interesting, added information (a non-defining clause). For example:

* The car that is parked in front of the gates will be towed away. (Defining relative clause.) Information contained in the defining relative clause is absolutely essential in order for us to be able to identify the car in question. * My dog, who is grey and white, chased the postman. ( Non-defining relative clause) A non-defining relative clause is separated from the rest of the sentence by commas. If you take away the non-defining clause the basic meaning of the sentence remains intact. For example:

* My dog chased the postman.
Adjective clauses answer questions like "which?" or "what kind of?" Summary
An adjective clause functions as an adjective (modifies a noun or pronoun); an adverb clause functions as an adverb (describes a verb, adjective or other adverb); a noun clause is used as a noun (subject of a verb, direct object, indirect object, predicate nominative or object of the preposition). Recognize an adjective clause when you see one.

Here are some examples:
Whose big, brown eyes pleaded for another cookie
Whose = relative pronoun; eyes = subject; pleaded = verb.
Why Fred cannot stand sitting across from his sister Melanie Why = relative adverb; Fred = subject; can stand = verb [not, an adverb, is not officially part of the verb]. That bounced across the kitchen floor

That = relative pronoun functioning as subject; bounced = verb. Who hiccupped for seven hours afterward

Who = relative pronoun functioning as subject; hiccupped = verb. Adjective Clauses In Action
Adjective clauses do not change the basic meaning of the sentence. In some cases, when they provide more information into a sentence, they need to be set off with commas. Here are several examples of sentences with the adjective clauses underlined: * Pizza, which most people love, is not very healthy.

* The people whose names are on the list will go to camp. * Grandpa remembers the old days when there was no television.  * Fruit that is grown organically is expensive.
* Students who are intelligent get good grades.
* Eco-friendly cars that run on electricity save gas.
* I know someone whose father served in World War II.
* Making noise when he eats is the main reason why Sue does not like to eat with her brother. * The kids who were called first will have the best chance of getting a seat. * Running a marathon, a race of twenty-six miles, takes a lot of training. * I enjoy telling people about Janet Evanovich whose latest book was fantastic. * The people waiting all night outside the Apple store are trying to purchase a new iPhone. * "He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe is as good as dead." - Albert Einstein * “Those who do not complain are never pitied.” - Jane Austen * “People demand freedom of speech to make up for the freedom of thought which they avoid.” - Søren Kierkegaard * “Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.” - Erma Bombeck Turning Adjective Clauses into Phrases

An adjective clause with a subject pronoun - such as which, that or who - can also be shortened into a phrase. You can shorten an adjective clause in two ways:
1. Omit the subject pronoun and verb.
2. Omit the subject pronoun and change the verb to...
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