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Before I ask questions, please read the following content first.

The interviewees were trying very hard to impress the interviewers that they were very capable and should be given the job.

This content came from an important English test in some country.

What confused me most is why that-clause seems to give more information but without any verb to connect. To me,it is like:

The interviewees were trying very hard to impress the interviewers and "show" that they were very capable and should be given the job.

Why I think it is odd is that "impress" often just connects one objective in sentences but it'll connect two objections if we don't place any verb in front of that-clause in this sentence.

So, could you tell me what that-clause functions as in this sentence? And,is that-clause an objective in this sentence?why can that-clause be put there? Anyway,I think that it has some grammatical errors, doesn't it?(btw,is this tag question correct?)

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    It's functioning as a complement of the verb "impress". But your example is ungrammatical since "impress" does not license (specifically require or permit) declarative content clauses (that clauses). Note that you could say "The interviewees were trying very hard to convince the interviewers that they were very capable and should be given the job. – BillJ Dec 29 '18 at 12:07
  • @BillJ "convince" is really a good choice. And, thanks for your explanation.":) – Chang yo Dec 29 '18 at 13:15
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Use "that" with verbs of attribution. The original example does not use "impress" in such a way.

You use "that" with verbs of attribution but "impress" by itself is not a verb of attribution. "Impress" itself just means "make one's self look very good." In this case, you would need to add "and show" to have a verb/object pairing.

If you said "impress upon", this changes "impress" to mean "emphasize to" which is a verb of attribution and would use "that":

The interviewees were trying very hard to impress upon the interviewers that they were very capable and should be given the job.

  • Um…I'm sorry,but could you tell me what is the verbs of attribution or explain in more simple way? It'll help a lot. Thanks":) – Chang yo Dec 29 '18 at 8:57
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    Verbs of attribution are things like "wrote" or "said" where dialogue needs to be attributed to a person so that it's clear who is saying something. – rpeinhardt Dec 29 '18 at 8:59
  • Oh……by the way,can I use tag questions even if the subject of Independent Clause isn't as the same as the tag questions have? Like the sentence at the end of my article above.xdd it will be very nice of you to answer this little problem.":) – Chang yo Dec 29 '18 at 13:20
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If you want to use impress with a that-clause, use impress upon instead.

The interviewees were trying very hard to impress upon the interviewers that they were very capable and should be given the job.

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