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I'm studying now an English book on German with the following term:

Collen described the accident she had during her winter holidays.

I know it's an expanded attribute as the second part of the sentence. But why is there no relative pronoun like which or that?

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    "That" is optional except where 'gap' is subject, when it is obligatory.In your example, it is object of "had", ("Collen described the accident she had ___ during her winter holidays") and hence is optional. Note that "that" is a subordinator, not a relative pronoun, and the relative clause is a post-head modifier not an attributive one. – BillJ Sep 1 '17 at 14:21
  • It's pretty much the same as the "optional subordinator" that OP himself didn't include in his own text: I know [that] it's an expanded attribute... – FumbleFingers Sep 2 '17 at 18:34
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Because it's not needed. The relative pronoun can be omitted if it refers to an object of a verb. In this case, it refers to the object of verb "had".

Collen described the accident (which) she had which (=the accident) during her winter holidays.

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