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1) Your poor examination result is due to the problem that you do not want to learn about grammar.

I use a noun clause "that .....grammar" as a complement for "the problem". Is the sentence structure correct ?

Similarly, can I write:-

2) Revenue dropped due to fewer units of property that were sold in 2013.

using "that ....2013" to complement the object "property"?

  • What do you find confusing in those examples? – Nico Jul 26 '14 at 9:47
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    @Nico I don't think the OP finds these sentences confusing. Rather, I think the OP wrote them and is uncertain about e.g. what complements problem can take. – snailcar Jul 26 '14 at 11:24
  • @snailplane The title made me hesitate. On the use of "due to", I found StoneyB's comments to this answer helpful. – Nico Jul 26 '14 at 11:38
  • And here's the link – Nico Jul 26 '14 at 12:01
  • @Nico Note, however, that although the questions look very similar OP in fact raises an entirely different question here. – StoneyB on hiatus Jul 26 '14 at 12:24
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Both sentences are grammatical; but your analysis of sentence 2 is faulty, and the sentence does not express what I think you want it to express.

In sentence 2, that .... 2013 is not a complement of property. Property has two very different senses—in effect, they are two different words which share a common origin. You might think of them as etymological twin daughters.

  • In the sense ‘quality, attribute, or distinctive feature’ (Collins 6), property takes a complement in one of two forms: a that, or a preposition phrase headed by of:

    This magic sword has the property that it renders its wielder invulnerable to fire.
    This magic sword has the property of rendering its wielder invulnerable to fire.

    Note that a that complement clause requires an explicit subject and explicit complement(s) to the verb.

  • But in the sense ‘something possessed’ (Collins 1-4), which is the sense employed in your sentence 2, property does not take a complement.

    This magic sword is my property that I won it in a fight with the ogre Grimghast.
    This magic sword is my property of my winning it in a fight with the ogre Grimghast.

Property in the ‘possession’ sense may, however, be modified by a relative clause headed by that. Note that in this case the that replaces one of the constituents of the clause, moved to the head of the clause if it’s not there already. That may also be expressed with which.

okThis magic sword is my property that I won it in a fight with the ogre Grimghast.
okThis magic sword is my property which I won it in a fight with the ogre Grimghast.

Such a relative clause is what you have in your sentence 2.

Revenue dropped due to fewer units of property that they were sold in 2013.

Consequently, the object of due to is the noun phrase headed by units, and this sentence attributes the decrease in revenue to the units themselves rather than to falling sales!

I think what you want is a gerund clause:

Revenue dropped due to fewer units being sold in 2013.


marks a usage as unacceptable

  • Thanks. For " fewer units being sold in 2013", the gerund is "being sold" and "fewer units" is a modifier. Do I understand correctly ? – Pupu Jul 28 '14 at 2:02
  • @Pupu No: this is a subordinate gerund clause. Its 'head' is the (nonfinite) verb being sold and its subject is fewer units – StoneyB on hiatus Jul 28 '14 at 2:12
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(1) In the first sentence, "due to the problem that" isn't incorrect, but it's not as idiomatic and common as "due to the fact that," as discussed in another similar question you posted. To answer your question, the information after "that" in your sentence is correct.

(2) is clumsy and confusing. I would recommend one of the following:

Revenue dropped due to the fact that fewer units were sold in 2013.

-or-

Revenue dropped due to (or as a result of) fewer units being sold in 2013.

Remember that if you want to use a conjugated verb, you have to use "due to the fact that..." Otherwise, "due to" calls for a noun, noun phrase, or other substantivized expression.

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