What does this sentence mean?⬇

"Your teachers coming to our schools would fulfil the contract."

Especially "Your teachers coming to our schools..."

I do not really know how to understand this.

  • Welcome to the ell, would you please add the source or a link to the source? You can add new contents by clicking on edit below the tags.
    – Cardinal
    Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 11:12
  • I think that's another one of those reduced relative clauses - "that are" Commented Jul 3, 2017 at 11:40

1 Answer 1


The confusion is probably because this is an archaic construction. It is called genitive case. Teachers is not the subject of the sentence, although it appears to be because it comes first. The gerund phrase coming to our schools is the real subject, and it belongs to the teachers because it is an action they will undertake.

To be grammatically correct, the sentence should have a possessive apostrophe after teachers: Your teachers' coming to our schools would fulfill the contract.

Other ways to phrase the same idea:

  • Your teachers, by coming to our schools, would fulfill the contract.
  • By coming to our schools, your teachers would fulfill the contract.
  • To fulfill the contract, your teachers must come to our schools.
  • Coming to our schools is how your teachers would fulfill the contract.
  • The contract will be fulfilled when your teachers come to our schools.
  • etc. etc.

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