There are sentences where two clauses are not joined by conjunction or punctuation. Notice the position of asterisk in below sentences where I "feel" empty/lack of conjunction or punctuation:

  1. The management team developed * the company’s positioning statement.
  2. Most women undergo a feeling of uncertainty during pregnancy, birth and the postpartum stage, even if it is not the first time * they are experiencing it.
  3. It’s not the first time * Biden has voiced this Trump-is-terrible-but-Republicans-are-OK sentiment.
  4. But when they returned the following morning, they were frustrated to discover that all the furniture in question had been returned to the exact positions *they had been moved from.

Looks like the part after asterisk are dependent clause in all 4 cases!

What kind of grammatical rule is applied here? What is the term that defines such joining? What is the related grammatical term?

  • For 2, 3, and 4 the * could be replaced with "that", but I'm struggling to see what's missing in 1. That one sounds perfectly natural without anything there, unless there's context that's missing? Jan 13 at 15:21

2 Answers 2


In #1, the company’s positioning statement is a noun phrase. It is the direct object of developed.

In #2, the clause after the asterisk is a declarative content clause. The complementiser that is optional and has been omitted. It's correct that there is no comma before the declarative content clause.

#3 and #4 have the same structure and explanation.

  • In some languages, a comma is correct before relative that, but not in standard English. Jan 13 at 19:59
  • Thank you, could you plz name the type of phrase/clause of following: 1. The way he dressed...2. The point I am trying to make...( followed by be verb "is" and "are" respectively)
    – Michael
    Jan 14 at 10:09
  • 1
    "The way he dressed" and "the point I am trying to make" are noun phrases; "is" and "are" are copulae or linking verbs. Jan 14 at 10:48

In the first one, the company's positioning statement is a noun phrase acting as object of developed. There is nothing missing.

In all the others, there is a subordinate clause, complement to the first time and the exact positions. The subordinator "that" is optional in all three cases.

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