I know some phrases can take clauses as objects:

make sure that-clause/if, whether-clause/wh-clause

I want to make sure that everything goes well.

bear in mind that-clause/if, whether-clause/wh-clause

You should bear in mind what they taught you.

But for phrases “make clear/possible/public”

We should say "make it clear/possible/public+that-clause" (normally that-clause, not wh-clause? not sure about if-clause)

You should make possible what is written on the draft.

Then what is the difference?

  • Please include an example sentence (or sentences) to illustrate your question (e.g.: He makes it public which candidate he prefers, or She makes it clear whether or not she prefers pistachio ice cream.) Sep 7 '16 at 19:33
  • Thanks very much for your recommendation, I have edited, please help me check.
    – moyeea
    Sep 7 '16 at 20:02
  • Your question is still unclear, @moyeea . The that/what clause is the object in all three sentences. What difference are you asking about? (When you use a comma, always put a space after it!) Sep 7 '16 at 20:12
  • You can quite naturally say either of Please make what you mean clear or Please make clear what you mean. But whereas you could (just about) say Please make my dreams possible, I doubt any native speakers would endorse Please make possible my dreams. My advice would be to stick with make [something] possible (i.e. - only use this "compound verb" if you're going to embed the "object" within it - don't try to move the components around in creative ways). Sep 7 '16 at 20:44
  • @FumbleFingers Thanks so much for your help! But can I say :"I found what I did wrong" or "I found wrong what I did" or "I found it wrong what I did" Not every verb + adjective can use this structure, right?
    – moyeea
    Sep 7 '16 at 21:48

"make" can take the pattern Verb + Direct Object (DO) + Object Complement (OC) (a close synonym for "make" in this pattern is "render"), for example:

  • She makes me nervous.

When the direct object is a nominal or an infinitival clause, dummy "it" will usually be required to fill the place of the DO between the verb and the clausal OC.

"make clear" and "make sure" are the only phrases I can think of that form such a lexical unit that they can do without dummy "it" even if the DO is extraposed (i.e. placed after the OC). Of these two verb phrases, "make clear" allows the optional use of dummy "it":

  • I made sure that everything was fine.
  • I made clear that I was in favor of the proposal. OR
  • I made it clear that I was in favor of the proposal.

In all other cases, dummy "it" will be used with clausal direct objects:

  • I made it public that I would not support his motion.
  • I made it possible for you to be here today.

I don't think "if/whether"- clauses can work with "make public/possible." Other noun clauses will, but the DO will need to remain in its usual position (i.e. between the verb and the object complement):

  • You should make what is written on the draft possible.

If you find the DO to be too long, then you'll have to look for another alternative, for example:

  • You should see to it that what is written on the draft becomes possible / can be actually done/implemented/put into practice.
  • I frequently see public used without the it: "I made public that I would not support his motion." Possible can be used without "it" using a different construction: "Your being here today was made possible by..." or even "You made possible my being here today."
    – fixer1234
    May 21 '17 at 19:29

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