#1.It never snows where I live.

I can't understand a structure of the sentence above. I don't now whether it is an adverb relative clause or a nominal relative clause. Whatever it is, I think it needs something before where clause ; an antecedent or a preposition. Otherwise, Would 'where clause' function itself an adverb in the sentence?

Or Do I have to understand the structure of the sentence like the following.

#2.Where I live, It never snows.

#3.When I had lived, It never snowed.

So, do all # 1,2 and 3 have the same structure?

  • Adverbial clause of place : My son told me another fight broke out where he eats lunch at school.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 6:03
  • An adjunct of place, but a preposition phrase, not a clause.
    – BillJ
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 7:37
  • Reference : docdroid.net/t5kj/fused-relatives-pdf
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 9:54
  • That's a useful reference, @bak1936
    – BillJ
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 10:41
  • serve ; to work or perform duties for a person, an organization, a country, etc/ work ; to function; to operate.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 21:51

2 Answers 2


The sentence is fine as is. “Where I live” is an adverbial clause. It modifies the verb “snows” and answers the question “where”. I wouldn’t call it a “relative” clause, though.

  • one more question! If where clause answers the question "where", which question could exist? I think the answer of where I live isn't common. I don't still understand that part of your answer.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 7:21
  • Verb-modifying adverbials typically answer where, when, why, or how. (Usually—not always.) Commented May 14, 2022 at 10:51
  • I know 5W-H questions. but Answering a question in where, when, why or how have been difficult to find in google so far. Please, show me some supporting evidences. Also, I think Verb-modifying adverbials have nothing to do with question. I don't know what it is.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 12:34
  • @bak1936 What Marc is saying is right, though I would call "where I live" not a clause but a PP in a fused relative construction. Whichever analysis is preferred, "where I live" is functioning as an adjunct in clause structure, i.e. a modifier in the VP "never snows". Note that 'adjunct' is a better term than adverbial.
    – BillJ
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 12:45

It never snows [where I live].

Yes: it's a 'fused' relative construction (your nominal relative) in which "where" is a preposition, thus where I live is a preposition phrase.

It has a paraphrase containing noun + integrated relative: It never snows in the place where I live, where the expression "where I live" is clearly a relative clause modifying "place".

The 'fusion' involves the preposition "where", which simultaneously serves as head of the noun phrase and adjunct of place in the relative clause.

  • Thanks Billj always!! you make me study harder, but sometimes I couldn't find the information in your answer.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 7:17
  • I understand a little, but I don't know what head of the noun phrase means. I just know a little the concept of AP, NP and VP. In where clause, It is difficult for me to understand what the head become.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 9:01
  • and Is it right that where is preposition? Do you mean where functions preposition for NRC is NP?
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 9:11
  • @bak1936 Yes, in "It never snows [where I live]", "where" is a preposition, so the bracketed element is a preposition phrase, not a clause. Think of "where" as meaning "in the place", which clearly is a preposition phrase whose head word is the preposition "in".
    – BillJ
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 9:47
  • Thanks!! PP's head is preposition.
    – bak1936
    Commented May 14, 2022 at 9:53

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